Virginia House of Delegates Speaker William J. Howell (R-Stafford) issued the following statement on the Eastern District Court’s decision in Bethune-Hill et al v. Virginia State Board of Elections e.t al. In a 2-1 decision written by Senior U.S. District Judge Robert E. Payne, the Court upheld the House of Delegates redistricting plan adopted in 2011, concluding that “each of the twelve Challenged Districts withstands constitutional scrutiny under the Equal Protection Clause.” The full opinion can be found here.
“We are very pleased that the Eastern District Court upheld the bipartisan redistricting plan adopted by the House of Delegates in 2011. Today’s decision validates our consistently held view that the House districts were drawn in accordance with the Constitution, all state and federal laws, and in a fair and open process.
“This politically-motivated lawsuit, funded by liberal billionaires, unnecessarily cost Virginia taxpayers hundreds of thousands of dollars. The lawsuit came despite the fact that the House districts were adopted with bipartisan support, including the support of a majority of the African American members in the House of Delegates at the time, and approved by President Obama’s Department of Justice.
“We will continue to defend the validity of the House districts and remain confident they will withstand legal scrutiny.”