We're happy to announce today that we have gathered 20% of the required signatures to get on the November 2016 General Election Ballot!
It is crystal clear that voters in Maryland's 8th Congressional District want more options. They want a democratic fight. And it is no wonder.
After the 2011 Redistricting, Maryland is tied with North Carolina for the most gerrymandered state in the union according to the Washington Post.
As recent as today, the US Supreme Court decided that a bi-partisan group of citizens should be able to make its case before a three-judge panel to determine whether the 2011 Redistricting violated their 1st Amendment Right of political association.
The High Court did not address the merits of the case, but it did reverse the Appeal's Court judgment and pushed it back down for consideration because federal law mandates a rare, but mandatory three-judge panel be convened when someone brings a case challenging the "constitutionality of the apportionment of congressional districts or the apportionment of any statewide legislative body." 28 U.S.C. 2284(a)
Last year, the district judge (the federal trial judge) dismissed the case stating that "nothing about the congressional districts at issue in this case affects in any proscribed way [the citizen's] ability to participate in the political debate in any of the congressional districts.... They are free to join preexisting political committees, form new ones, or use whatever other means are at their disposal to influence the opinions of their congressional representatives." 577 U.S. __ (2015), citing Benisek v. Mack, 11 F. Supp. 3d 516, 526 (Md. 2014).
According to the Supreme Court, one district judge does not have the right to evaluate a case that calls into question our congressional districts. A singular judge can only dismiss a case if it is "frivolous," "immaterial," or "obviously without merit."
Clearly, we believe that our representation is not "frivolous" or "immaterial" or "obviously without merit". Since it is unlikely that Shapiro v. McManus makes it back to the Supreme Court to effect November's Election, in many ways, our campaign has empowered the voters in CD8 who were deliberately silenced in 2011 with a stroke of a pen.
It's still quite remarkable, but today shows how important this campaign has become. It remains our mission to amplify our voices no matter how daunting the restrictions or requirements are on us.
Join TEAM LIZ Today -- We must show how serious we take this democracy!