Lawsuit Says New Council Districts Discriminate Against Hispanics

Anna Merlan
Even back in October, Hispanic leaders were pledging to fight the newly drawn council maps.
Can't say we didn't see this coming, but a pair of Dallas voters are alleging that the recently redrawn City Council districts illegally dilutes the Hispanic vote.

The city redrew its 14 council districts following the release of the 2010 Census. It adopted the final maps in October. According to a lawsuit filed today in federal court by Renato De Los Santos and Hilda Ramirez Duarte, only three of them are viable Hispanic districts when, given the city's demographics -- Hispanics make up 42.4 percent of the population and 36.8 percent of the voting age population -- there should have been four.

The fact that there aren't "prevents any meaningful participation in the electoral process by Hispanics."

De Los Santos and Duarte are seeking to bar the city from holding elections using the new maps and asking that the districts be redrawn so that the City Council better represents the Hispanic population which, the suit reminds us, "historically suffered from and continues to suffer from the effects of discriminatory treatment in education, employment, health, income and living conditions which hinders their ability to participate fully in the political process."

The suit's after the jump.

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My Voice Nation Help

Someone else asked it, but I will reiterate" Do illegals also count on this? Non-citizens? If we loaded up a district with abotu 20,000 Indian or Chinese non-citizens--people here on H1 visas. could there be a case to have them represented? Please, only a viable, actual answer--not some diatribe on immigration. Is this about representation of citizens or people?

Montemalone topcommenter



A politician can get elected by any population if it tells them what they want to hear.

Perpetuating a quota ain't gonna fix anything.


"historically suffered from and continues to suffer from the effects of discriminatory treatment in education, employment, health, income and living conditions which hinders their ability to participate fully in the political process."


education - pay attention in class and learn

employment - you're kidding, right?

health - lay off the lard, get off your fat ass, and exercise

income - welcome to the 1% Century

living conditions - government isn't gonna come clean up your room, carry out your trash, and cut your grass.

and if you want to fully participate in the political process, vote.

Myrna.Minkoff-Katz topcommenter

The republicans use voter suppression and redistricting to win.  Nothing new there.


So... what percentage of the Hispanic population in these districts are ACTUAL U.S CITIZENS WHO ARE ELIGIBLE TO VOTE?


Wouldn't that be a relevant question?That's the beauty of illegal immigration -- fill up "Rotten boroughs" with people who aren't even supposed to be here, then reap the benefits ($$$$$$ from Uncle Sam) as the votes of actual American Citizens get diluted.Senators Vitter and Bennett put forward the eminently sensible amendment that only citizens should count for the purposes of apportionment. Then, of course, the Treason Lobby intervened to make sure the illegal-immigrant gravy train proceeds unbostructed. 


Hispanic is not a race,therefore not a protected class under voting rights act.Language barrier is the protected group so if you add any other legal residents who's first language is not english they can qualify.That 42% they keep saying are total number of spanish speakers however the group is much smaller when you count Legal Citizen eligable to vote.


It's the "performance" of the districts argument that will be crucial (paragraph 20).  District 1 as drawn will not perform as a Hispanic district because all those darn white folk in Kessler Park insist on voting.  

We'll see if the Court buys it. . .

Sotiredofitall topcommenter

Another case of if you can't win try to change the rules


I have heard Mr. Rios make this arguement before.  Notice that there are four districts with majority Hispanic populations: 1-79%,  2-62%, 5-70%, and 6-70%.  Mr. Rios will argue with a straight face that district 2, with 62% Hispanic population (and 76% total minority population) does not count as a minority opportunity district because Hispanics have historically low turn out.  He will go on to say that 50% is sufficient for African-Americans to have an minority opportunity district.   It will be interesting to see if this twisted logic will win in court.  I would argue that low turnout means that either 1) voters are happy with the current leadership; or 2) they don't care. 


"viable Hispanic districts "




Typical liberal racism.


 @Myrna.Minkoff-Katz Are you really this dense or is it a "bit".


Republicans don't control Dallas City politics, nor did they control the Dallas redistricting process.  This is a Black vs Brown fight, not Blue vs Red.


Please keep up or go to the children's table and quit disturbing the adult conversation.


 @Myrna.Minkoff-Katz  @PlanoDave What? And why wouldn't you be? We are talking about Dallas city politics. I think you need to do what Dave suggested and go sit at the kids table. 

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