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Annotated Guide to the Amicus Briefs in Moore v. Harper

As the Supreme Court prepares to hear a case that raises the radical “independent state legislature theory,” friends of the court have filed nearly 70 briefs.

On December 7, 2022, the U.S. Supreme Court will hear oral argument in Moore v. Harper, a case posing the question whether the North Carolina Supreme Court violated the U.S. Constitution’s Elections Clause when it struck down the state legislature’s illegally gerrymandered congressional map for violating the North Carolina Constitution. The legislators who created the gerrymander have argued that a debunked interpretation of the Elections Clause—known as the "independent state legislature theory”—renders state courts and state constitutions powerless in matters relating to federal elections.

In a sure sign of the how radical the theory is, forty eight friend-of-court briefs—filed by a diverse array of historians, bipartisan groups of federal, state, and local government officials, law professors, civil rights organizations, and good government groups, among others—support the voters and non-profits challenging the theory. Meanwhile, sixteen briefs support the legislators and five briefs support neither party. 

To help you sort through the briefs, the Brennan Center has prepared this annotated guide, which summarizes each brief’s most prominent or unique points. Briefs with no asterisks before their titles were filed in support of the voters and non-profits opposing the independent state legislature theory. Briefs marked with an asterisk (*) were filed in support of the legislators—who are encouraging the Supreme Court to embrace the theory. Briefs marked with two asterisks (**) were filed in support of neither party.

To find out more about Moore v. Harper, visit our regularly updated case page, which includes key filings and rulings from the Supreme Court phase of the case. And, for more on the independent state legislature theory, visit our project page.

Briefs Providing Conservative or Bipartisan Perspectives Against the ISLT

** The Conference of Chief Justices
This brief—which was filed on behalf of an organization representing a bipartisan group of current and former Chief Justices from across 50 states, the District of Columbia, and U.S. territories—explains that the Elections Clause does not prevent state constitutions from regulating laws for federal elections or block state legislatures from inviting state judicial review of those laws. The Conference further warns that any federal court review of state court decisions would need to be limited and based on clear principles to maintain states’ sovereignty. The law firm Sidley & Austin LLP and Evan Caminker, Dean Emeritus of Michigan Law School, are co-counsel for this brief.

Thomas Griffith, John Danforth, Larry Thompson, Barbara Comstock, Peter Keisler, Stuart Gerson, et al.
This brief—filed by a group of amici including former D.C. Circuit Judge Thomas Griffith and others “who have been Republican elected officials, worked in Republican federal administrations, or support conservative judicial principles”—explains how the North Carolina Supreme Court’s ruling that struck down North Carolina’s congressional gerrymander should stand even under Chief Justice Rehnquist’s dissent in Bush v. Gore and Chief Justice Roberts’ dissent in Arizona Independent Redistricting Commission. The brief also explains that the U.S. Constitution’s Tenth Amendment grants the people of each state the power to limit how their legislatures draw maps and set other election rules. Richard Bernstein is counsel for this brief.

Benjamin L. Ginsberg
This brief—filed by a prominent Republican election lawyer who played a central role in Bush v. Gore—offers a practitioner’s insights into how the ISLT would disrupt established election practices and create electoral chaos. León Cosgrove Jiménez, LLP is counsel for this brief.

Former Republican Elected and Executive Branch Officials
This brief—filed by sixteen former Republican elected and appointed government officials—explains how the ISLT would undermine existing rules for election administration and invite disruptive litigation. The law firms Mayer Brown LLP and McDermott Will & Emery LLP, along with the Yale Law School Supreme Court Clinic, are co-counsel for this brief.

Governor Arnold Schwarzenegger
This brief—filed by former Republican governor Arnold Schwarzenegger—underscores the importance of retaining traditional checks and balances on state legislatures’ power to make election laws. The brief also warns that the Supreme Court’s embrace of the ISLT could endanger several state courts’ efforts to eliminate partisan gerrymandering. The law firm Kellogg, Hansen, Todd, Figel & Frederick PLLC is counsel for this brief.

The American Civil Liberties Union, the ACLU of North Carolina, the Rutherford Institute, and the Niskanen Center
This brief—from the ACLU, one of its state affiliates, and several conservative non-profits—describes the successes state courts had this decade curbing unconstitutional maps. It also explains how those court rulings upheld both federalism principles and the Court’s promise in Rucho that state courts could police partisan gerrymanders using state law. The American Civil Liberties Union Foundation, the ACLU of North Carolina Legal Foundation, the Rutherford Institute, and the Niskanen Center are co-counsel for this brief.

Bipartisan Group of Former Public Officials, Former Judges, and Election Experts From Pennsylvania 
This brief—from a cross-partisan group of filers that includes several former federal judges—emphasizes the threats that the ISLT poses to free and fair elections. The Institute for Constitutional Accountability and Protection is counsel for this brief.

** Arizona Independent Redistricting Commission
This brief—filed under the unanimous vote of a redistricting commission that is staffed by Republicans and Democrats—counsels the Supreme Court to preserve independent redistricting commissions’ ability to draw congressional maps. The brief also explains how state-level judicial review in Arizona respects the commission’s map-drawing power. The law firms Snell & Wilmer LLP and Herrera Arellano LLP are co-counsel for this brief.

Briefs Providing Historical Perspectives

Briefs from Historians or Academics

Scholars of the Founding Era
This brief—filed by ten leading scholars of early American history—demonstrates that the ISLT is implausible as a historical matter. It explains that there is no evidence that anyone at the time of the Constitution’s framing believed in the theory and that the Framers created the Elections Clause to check out-of-control state legislatures. The law firm Paul, Weiss, Rifkind, Wharton & Garrison LLP is counsel for this brief.

State Constitutional Historians Lawrence Friedman and Robert F. Williams
This brief—filed by two leading state constitutional law experts—discusses how the Framers’ experiences revising state constitutions to limit out-of-control state legislatures under the Articles of Confederation influenced their decision at the Constitutional Convention to create the Elections Clause. The law firm Willkie, Farr & Gallagher is counsel for this brief.

Dean William M. Treanor
This brief—filed by the Dean of Georgetown Law, a leading scholar on the history of judicial review—explains that judicial review was well-established by the time of the Founding and was implicit in the Framers’ ideas of constitutionalism. As a consequence, the brief stresses, the Elections Clause permits state courts to review the laws their legislatures make for federal elections. The law firm Reed Smith is counsel for this brief.

Professor Evan Bernick
This brief—filed by originalist scholar Evan Bernick—demonstrates how the ISLT is inconsistent with the original public meaning of the Constitution. It draws on historical evidence from the Articles of Confederation, the Constitutional Convention, and early state constitutions. Protect Democracy and the law firm O’Melveny & Meyers LLP are co-counsel for this brief.

Other Briefs Providing Historical Perspectives

Constitutional Accountability Center
This brief explains how the ISLT cannot be squared with early historical practices of judicial review and state constitutionalism, the Framers’ distrust of state legislatures, or the operation of state constitutions following the Constitutional Convention. The Constitutional Accountability Center filed this brief on its own behalf.

Eugene H. Goldberg
This brief narrates aspects of seventeenth- and eighteenth-century American history relevant to the Court’s understanding of the Elections Clause. Eugene Goldberg filed this brief on his own behalf.

* Restoring Integrity and Trust in Elections
This brief argues, among other things, that the Framers did not intend to allow state courts to review congressional maps for their conformity with state constitutions. The law firm Jones Day is counsel for this brief.

* Honest Elections Project
This brief contends that critics of the ISLT misunderstand the relevant history and that widespread concerns about the consequences of the Court endorsing the theory are overblown. The law firm Consovoy McCarthy PLLC is counsel for this brief.

Briefs Addressing the Consequences of the ISLT

On Election Administration

Brennan Center for Justice
This brief demonstrates how the ISLT will create electoral chaos by identifying hundreds of state constitutional provisions, election law statutes, and other legal authorities that it would endanger. Along the way, it shows how “compromise” positions offered by ISLT proponents will still create extensive damage. The law firm Quinn Emanuel and the Brennan Center for Justice are co-counsel for this brief.

Richard L. Hasen
This brief—filed by leading elections scholar Richard Hasen—explains how the ISLT will increase federal litigation over elections, decrease public confidence in their fairness and integrity, and increase political polarization. Richard Hasen and the law firm Manatt, Phelps & Phillips, LLP are co-counsel for this brief.

Bipartisan Current and Former Election Officials Donetta Davidson, Tracy Howard, Neal Kelley, Roxanna Moritz, Helen Purcell, Al Schmidt, DeForest Soaries, and Janice Winfrey 
This brief—filed by a bipartisan group of eight current and former election officials representing several of the largest voting jurisdictions in the country—details how the ISLT would make election administration impossible by removing officials’ ability to exercise discretion and creating a “two-track” elections system. The law firm Gilbert LLP is counsel for this brief.

League of Women Voters of the United States and Leagues of Women Voters Representing 50 States and the District of Columbia
This brief from a leading national good governance group and its state-level affiliates explains through detailed case studies how the ISLT would complicate the administration of voting laws and create widespread voter confusion. The Fair Elections Center and the law firm O’Melveny & Myers LLP are co-counsel for this brief.

Local Government Law Professors
This brief from seven professors of local government law explains how local election officials ensure smooth elections and how the ISLT would complicate their work. It also sheds light on how state courts respond to practical problems that emerge during elections, including by ensuring that local officials properly use their discretionary authority. The Public Rights Project is counsel for this brief.

Secretaries of State of Colorado, et al. 
This brief—filed by Colorado’s Secretary of State Jena Griswold and twelve other current Secretaries of State—underscores how entrenched state judicial review of election disputes has become and how a Supreme Court ruling limiting that review would destabilize elections. The Colorado Solicitor General is counsel for this brief.

Current and Former Election Administrators
This brief—filed by election administrators with experience conducting concurrent federal and state elections—explains how the ISLT would cause chaos for election officials by, among other things, depriving them of clear “rules of the road” and authoritative interpretations of key laws. The law firm Perkins Coie LLP is counsel for this brief.

District of Columbia, et al.
This brief—filed by twenty-one states and the District of Columbia—explains how the ISLT conflicts with a long-running historical tradition of state constitutions, courts, and executive officials regulating elections. In addition, it describes in significant detail the many ways states make rules for federal elections. The Attorneys General for Illinois and the District of Columbia are co-counsel for this brief.

On Voters of Color or Religious Groups

Lawyers’ Committee for Civil Rights Under Law and Fourteen Additional Organizations
This brief—filed by a group of leading civil rights organizations—discusses how the ISLT would undermine efforts to protect voting rights and racial equity in the electoral process. The Lawyers’ Committee for Civil Rights Under Law and the law firm Cravath, Swaine & Moore LLP are co-counsel for this brief.

NAACP Legal Defense & Educational Fund, Inc. 
This brief unpacks how the ISLT would undermine the rights of voters of color. It particularly emphasizes how a Supreme Court ruling eliminating state-law remedies for partisan gerrymandering would incentivize Democratic and Republican map-drawers alike to subordinate the interests of communities of color to partisan objectives. NAACP LDF filed this brief on its own behalf.

Boston University Center for Antiracist Research and Professor Atiba R. Ellis
The brief explains how checks and balances on state legislative activity are critical to safeguarding the rights of Black voters. Additionally, it casts a spotlight on the history of racialized vote suppression in North Carolina. The law firm Brown Rudnick LLP is counsel for this brief.

The Anti-Defamation League, Sikh Coalition, Union for Reform Judaism, Central Conference of American Rabbis, Women of Reform Judaism, and Men of Reform Judaism 
This brief—filed by six faith-based organizations—highlights the historical and present importance of checks and balances to protecting minority rights, especially the rights of religious minorities. The law firm Frankfurt Kurnit Klein & Selz PC and the Anti-Defamation League are co-counsel for this brief.

On Democracy Generally

Campaign Legal Center, Democracy 21, End Citizens United//Let America Vote Action Fund, National Council Of Jewish Women, Inc., Onevirginia2021, RepresentUs, Republican Women For Progress, Unitarian Universalists For Social Justice, and Voters Not Politicians 
This brief—filed by nine public policy, advocacy, and faith-based organizations—explains how the ISLT would eliminate state constitutional remedies for partisan gerrymandering, deepen polarization, disable independent redistricting commissions, and produce adverse policy outcomes. The Campaign Legal Center serves as its own counsel for this brief.

Retired Four-Star Admirals and Generals and Former Service Secretaries of the U.S. Armed Forces 
This brief—filed by retired high-ranking military officials who served under Democratic and Republican administrations—explains how the ISLT could inject significant uncertainty and political instability into elections, create risks that could politicize the military, and thus endanger our democracy. The law firm DLA Piper LLP was counsel for this brief.

U.S. Senator Sheldon Whitehouse and Representative Henry “Hank” Johnson, Jr.
This brief stresses how many of the amici supporting the legislators have a history of election denialism—including playing central roles in the efforts to overturn the 2020 election. The brief also exposes the dark money connections among amici supporting the legislators. The law firm Smoger & Associates is counsel for this brief.

American Bar Association 
This brief—filed by the American Bar Association, the largest voluntary association of lawyers in the world—warns that the ISLT, if adopted, would undermine the integrity of elections, the rule of law, and American democracy. The American Bar Association and the law firm Selendy Gay Elsberg PLLC are co-counsel for this brief.

Making Every Vote Count and the Leadership Now Project
This brief—co-filed by a good governance nonprofit organization and a membership organization of business leaders—warns that the ISLT would have destabilizing effects on federal elections and democratic governance. Given the link between democracy and economic stability and prosperity, the brief continues, the theory also threatens the U.S. economy and businesses. The law firm Covington & Burling LLP is counsel for this brief.

* America’s Future
This brief accuses litigants of creating chaos in the 2020 election by pursuing elections cases. It also contends that state legislatures are exercising federal, not state, power when creating rules for federal elections and so are not bound by state constitutions when doing so. The law firms William J. Olson, P.C., Integrity Law Firm, and McSweeney, Cynkar & Kachouroff, PLLC are co-counsel for this brief.

** Wisconsin Voter Alliance and Pure Integrity Michigan Elections
This brief invokes the ISLT to raise questions about the constitutionality of President Biden’s Executive Order No. 14019—which promotes access to voting—and the Electoral Count Act. The law firm Mohrman, Kaardal & Erickson, P.A. is counsel for this brief.

On Particular States

National Association of Counties, National League of Cities, U.S. Conference of Mayors, International City/County Management Association, and the International Municipal Lawyers Association 
This brief—filed by a group of non-profit organizations representing or supporting local governments and local government officials—illustrates how elections operate at the local level with a detailed example from North Carolina. It also explains the negative impacts the ISLT would have on local officials’ ability to conduct elections. Wake Forest University Law School’s Appellate Advocacy Clinic is counsel for this brief.

Law Forward, et al.
This brief—filed by a Wisconsin-based non-profit and plaintiffs in a partisan-gerrymandering challenge to Wisconsin’s prior state legislative map—explains the negative impact the ISLT would have on Wisconsin, such as increasing litigation over elections, undermining the state’s decentralized system for administering elections, and perpetuating gerrymandering of the state’s maps. Law Forward, Inc. and the law firm Stafford Rosenbaum LLP are counsel for this brief.

Women4Change Indiana, Inc. 
This brief highlights several critical factors that will make the ISLT especially harmful for Indiana voters: the legislature’s frequent override of gubernatorial vetoes; the lack of direct democracy mechanisms; and the legislature’s low likelihood of initiating a constitutional amendment to rein in partisan gerrymandering. The law firm Faegre Drinker Biddle & Reath and Joseph H. Yeager, Jr. are co-counsel for this brief.

Briefs Discussing Legal Precedent, Constitutional Text, or Doctrinal Points

The United States
This brief from the United States supports the core arguments made by the voters and non-profits opposing the ISLT—including that the theory is contrary to text, history, and practice. The United States Department of Justice is counsel for this brief.

Senator Amy Klobuchar and Nineteen United States Senators
This brief—filed by the Chair of the Senate Committee on Rules and Administration and nineteen additional Senators—explains how the Elections Clause assumes both Congress and state legislatures are governed by ordinary checks and balances when they make rules for federal elections. It goes on to explain how members of Congress—when considering whether to exercise their power under the Elections Clause to alter (or override) state laws—assume that those laws have passed through the normal lawmaking process. The law firm Debevoise & Plimpton LLP is counsel for this brief.

Professors Akhil Amar, Vikram Amar, and Steven Gow Calabresi
This brief—filed by several leading legal scholars, including a co-founder of the Federalist Society—details how the ISLT fails as a legal matter, canvassing textualist, originalist, structural, and federalism-based arguments against it. Vikram Amar is counsel for this brief.

Scholars of State Constitutional Law 
This brief—filed by twelve professors of state constitutional law—explains the many problems with the compromise positions that the legislators offer the Court. The amici also set out historical reasons to conclude that the Elections Clause permits state constitutions and state courts to shape states’ laws for federal elections. The law firm Orrick, Herrington & Sutcliffe and the State Democracy Research Initiative are co-counsel for this brief.

Carolyn Shapiro, Nicholas O. Stephanopoulos, and Daniel P. Tokaji
This brief—filed by three constitutional law professors, including the Dean of the University of Wisconsin Law School—identifies the many doctrinal problems that the Supreme Court will have to resolve in follow-on litigation if it accepts the ISLT. Harvard Law School’s Election Law Clinic is counsel for this brief. 

Democracy and Race Scholars
This brief—filed by nine law professors specializing in election law, democracy, and the intersection of law and race—catalogues instances of state courts reviewing federal election laws over the past 150 years to underscore the ISLT’s inconsistency with historical practice. Guy-Uriel Charles and T. Alora Thomas-Lundberg of Harvard Law School and the law firm Dechert are co-counsel for this brief.

FairDistricts Now
This brief—drawing parallels between Florida anti-gerrymandering laws that the Supreme Court previously endorsed and the North Carolina legal provisions at issue in this case—explains how the North Carolina courts may lawfully review congressional maps for conformity with their state constitution. The law firm Patterson Belknap Webb & Tyler LLP is counsel for this brief.

North Carolina Senator Daniel T. Blue, Jr. and North Carolina Representative Robert T. Reives, II 
This brief—filed on behalf of Democratic leaders of the North Carolina Senate and House of Representatives—explains how embracing the ISLT would diminish the authority of state legislatures to regulate federal elections by precluding them from sharing their power with other state actors, as they have in North Carolina. The law firm Wilmer Cutler Pickering Hale and Dorr LLP is counsel for this brief.

Public Citizen
This brief clarifies that state courts do not “usurp” legislatures’ authority to set the rules for federal elections when they review those rules for constitutionality and provide remedies for any legal violations that they find. Public Citizen Litigation Group is counsel for this brief.

Charles Plambeck and Joni Walser
This brief from two North Carolina residents explains the historical origins of North Carolina’s Free Elections Clause. It also explains how Article I, Section 1 of the U.S. Constitution vests federal legislative power exclusively in Congress. The upshot, as they explain, is that state legislatures do not exercise federal legislative power when they regulate federal elections and so are still bound by their state constitutions. The law firm Caplin & Drysdale is counsel for this brief.

Puerto Rico House of Representatives
This brief from the Speaker of Puerto Rico’s House of Representatives explains how the ISLT violates basic notions of federalism. The ML & RE Law Firm is counsel for this brief.

Lawyers Defending American Democracy
This brief from a non-profit organization of lawyers proposes that, when presented with two competing interpretations of a constitutional provision, the Supreme Court should adopt the interpretation that would not threaten American democracy. On that basis, it continues, the Court should reject the ISLT. Gershon M. Ratner is counsel for this brief.

* APA Watch
This brief argues that the Elections Clause prohibits state legislatures from delegating state courts the power to review state laws governing federal elections or delegating other, “non-legislative" actors the power to make rules for federal elections. Laurence J. Joseph is counsel for this brief.

* Citizens United, Citizens United Foundation, and the Presidential Coalition
This brief asserts that the North Carolina state courts cannot regulate federal elections because the courts are not part of the legislature. It further contends that the Court would not need to revisit its opinion in Arizona Independent Redistricting Commission to make such a ruling. The law firm Dhillon Law Group, Inc. and the organizations Citizens United, Citizens United Foundation, and The Presidential Coalition are co-counsel for this brief.

* Claremont Institute’s Center for Constitutional Jurisprudence
This brief—filed by the Center for Constitutional Jurisprudence’s founding director and noted election denialist John Eastman—contends that state legislatures operate only pursuant to federal authority when regulating federal elections and cannot be constrained by any state law or even state constitutions. The brief further contends that several significant Supreme Court cases were wrongly decided and should be overturned. The Constitutional Counsel Group is counsel for this brief.

* American Legislative Exchange Council
This brief—filed by a voluntary membership organization of state legislators—contends that state courts in Pennsylvania, Maryland, and elsewhere are abusing their authority when ruling in disputes involving federal elections. The law firm Wiley Rein LLP and the American Legislative Exchange Council are co-counsel for this brief.

* White House Watch, a Project of the United States Public Policy Council, et al.
This brief—filed by several projects of the US Public Policy Council, the Conservative Christian Center, and residents of Pennsylvania and Virginia—discusses remedies for problematic congressional maps other than assigning special masters to redraw them. The examples it offers include encouraging the state legislatures to correct their own errors or asking Congress for a federal legislative solution. The law firm Carroll, Ucker & Hemmer LLC is counsel for this brief.

* Senator Kim Ward and the Republican Caucus of the Pennsylvania Senate
This brief—which was filed by Pennsylvania Senate Majority Leader Kim Ward and her Pennsylvania Senate caucus—suggests that the Pennsylvania Supreme Court violated the Elections Clause with recent rulings striking down gerrymandered maps and extending voting deadlines. The law firm K&L Gates LLP is counsel for this brief.

* Lawyers Democracy Fund and State Legislators
This brief—which was filed by the Lawyers Democracy Fund and twelve current and former state legislators—criticizes the North Carolina Supreme Court’s decision in this case as part of a greater trend of state courts abusing their remedial authority to achieve partisan goals. The law firm Baker & Hostetler LLP is counsel for this brief.

* Public Interest Legal Foundation
This brief argues that the Elections Clause gives power to regulate federal elections solely to the North Carolina General Assembly, not the state’s courts. The Public Legal Foundation serves as its own counsel for this brief.

* Republican National Committee, NRCC, and North Carolina Republican Party
This brief—filed by several Republican political organizations—argues the Elections Clause does not grant completely unbounded power to state legislatures because they must still answer to Congress and the federal courts. It further contends that federal legal protections are sufficient to protect against “post-election mischief.” The law firm Holtzman, Vogel, Baran, Torchinsky & Josefiak PLLC is counsel for this brief.

Briefs Proposing Ways to Resolve the Case Without Addressing the ISLT

Derek T. Muller
This brief—filed by conservative election law scholar Derek Muller—explains how the Supreme Court can resolve Moore in favor of the voters and non-profits without ruling on the validity of the ISLT. In particular, the brief shows that the North Carolina Supreme Court’s decision to strike down the congressional map was legally valid because it respected the commands that Congress laid out in a federal statute (2 U.S.C. § 2(c)) . The law firm Holwell Shuster & Goldberg LLP is counsel for this brief.

Michael L. Rosin
This brief from an independent scholar explains how the Supreme Court can resolve Moore in favor of the voters and non-profits without addressing the ISLT, offering a historical complement to Professor Muller’s approach. The law firm Stris & Maher LLP is counsel for this brief.

Human Rights Watch
This brief highlights how a Supreme Court ruling endorsing the ISLT would compromise the United States’ international role as a democratic norm-setter. It also details how the theory violates various treaties the United States has signed and thus violates the will of Congress. The law firm Cleary Gottlieb Steen & Hamilton LLP is counsel for this brief.

Stephen Shapiro
This brief—filed by the lead plaintiff in a challenge to Maryland’s prior congressional map—argues that the Supreme Court does not have jurisdiction to hear this appeal because the Elections Clause does not protect the North Carolina legislators’ aim to pursue their partisan advantage through the congressional mapping process. Stephen Shapiro filed this brief on their own behalf.

** Secretary of State of Missouri
This brief—which was filed by Missouri Secretary of State John Ashcroft—contends that the Elections Clause does not cover congressional redistricting and that states have the power under the U.S. Constitution’s Tenth Amendment to draw congressional maps as they see fit. Secretary Ashcroft’s General Counsel is counsel for this brief.

* America First Legal
This brief proposes that the Supreme Court should vacate the decision below because the North Carolina courts did not follow statutorily prescribed processes that govern when a state legislature fails to pass a valid map. The law firms Mitchell PLLC and Lawfair LLC, as well as the America First Legal Foundation, are co-counsel for this brief.

Briefs Proposing Rules for Invalidating Judicial Review Under the Elections Clause

* National Republican Redistricting Trust
This brief—filed by a Republican organization coordinating national, state, and local groups for redistricting efforts— argues that the North Carolina Supreme Court engaged in unconstitutional “lawmaking” when it struck down the state’s map. The brief also suggests that the U.S. Supreme Court should only allow state courts to intervene in congressional redistricting processes when legislatures have expressly given them that power or there is “true deadlock” that would prevent a map from being drawn. The law firm Holtzman, Vogel, Baran, Torchinsky & Josefiak, PLLC is counsel for this brief.

* Arkansas, et al.
This brief—filed by thirteen states—contends that the Elections Clause should bar the North Carolina Supreme Court from invalidating the state’s congressional map under any of the constitutional provisions it relied upon, because those provisions are “vague.” The brief more broadly questions the authority of state courts to rule on election matters. The attorneys general offices for the respective filing states are co-counsel for this brief.

* Taxpayers for Honest Elections
This brief contends that the North Carolina Supreme Court’s ruling violated the Elections Clause because state courts can only enforce “procedural” state constitutional provisions and not “substantive” ones when ruling on federal election matters. The law firms Walker Kiger, PLLC and Kevin Cline Law PLLC, as well as Chief Counsel and Strategy Director for the North Carolina Republican Party Phillip Thomas, are co-counsel for this brief.

** Group of New York Voters
This brief—which was filed by voters who challenged the legality of New York’s congressional map—argues that if state legislatures want to assign other state bodies the authority to regulate congressional elections, they must clearly say as much in a statute. They contend that this approach would preserve New York’s limits on partisan gerrymandering. The law firm Troutman Pepper Hamilton Sander LLP is counsel for this brief.