The “independent state legislature theory” is a misreading of the Constitution, advanced in recent years by a small group of right-wing advocates, that would give state legislatures wide authority to gerrymander electoral maps and pass voter suppression laws. It has even been used as political cover to try to overturn elections. At its core, the theory challenges longstanding checks and balances on state legislatures when they make laws for federal elections. The danger that this unorthodox theory poses has risen in recent years as several sitting justices of the Supreme Court have voiced their interest in making it the new law of the land.
But there’s still time to protect our elections. The Brennan Center is mobilizing to block this threat through a combination of litigation and communications projects designed to shore up the legal protections for fair elections and fair maps.