Democrats in the Alabama House have decided to fight new legislative districts in Washington rather than in the state.
House Minority Leader Craig Ford of Gadsden said House Democrats have consulted with their attorneys and decided not to challenge the districts in state court. Instead, they will take their battle to the U.S. Justice Department. The Voting Rights Act requires the Justice Department to approve the new districts before they can be used in the legislative elections in 2014.
The Legislature's new Republican majority pushed through the House districts in May. Democrats complained that they split counties between too many districts and diminished the influence of black voters. Republicans said the lines fairly reflected shifts in population between counties, and they predicted the Justice Department will approve them.
(Copyright 2012 by The Associated Press. All Rights Reserved.)