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**FILE** D.C. Attorney General Karl Racine (Roy Lewis/The Washington Informer)

D.C. Attorney General Karl A. Racine is spearheading a group of attorneys general urging the Supreme Court to continue protecting the voting power of minority communities.

In a brief filed Tuesday in the Merrill vs. Milligan case, the 21 attorneys general argue the high court should affirm a lower court’s ruling that Alabama’s congressional district map violates the Voting Rights Act and must be redrawn.

The group wants the Supreme Court to keep the established standard used to determine whether a plaintiff has a viable claim of unlawful vote dilution.

Plus, the brief contends the court should reject Alabama’s proposed new standard for judging whether such a claim can proceed because it is unnecessary, untested and unmanageable. Under the Voting Rights Act, a state may not draw a legislative district that dilutes minority voting power and prevent communities of color from having a chance to elect their preferred candidates.

Almost 30% of Alabama’s population is Black but the state legislature and the governor have approved a plan that has only one majority-Black congressional district. Civil and voting rights groups are seeking to have that map thrown out and a new one with more voting strength for Blacks approved.

“Alabama’s congressional district maps are not fair — they dilute Black voting power and violate the Voting Rights Act,” Racine said. “We’re urging the Supreme Court not to upend decades of established precedent and to maintain the existing standard for judging the fairness of legislative districts. A win for Alabama, in this case, would determine the protections provided by the Voting Rights Act and make it much harder for minority communities to fight back against attempts to dilute their political power.”

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