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Court says Democrats gerrymandered NY’s district boundaries

A panel of five appellate judges ruled that Democratic state Legislators utilized gerrymandering when drawing the New York’s Congressional district boundaries.

The ruling came down 3-2 with the majority having found the new district lines unconstitutional. If this decision is upheld by the Court of Appeals, new district maps would have to be drawn ahead of the midterms in November, according to News10 NBC.

Related: New York State Court of Appeals to decide if district maps will be redrawn, primary elections pushed back

The mid-level court acknowledged Democratic lawmakers were within their power to draw up new district maps after the state’s Independent Redistricting Committee failed to reach consensus on proposed maps back in January of this year. However, the court also ruled the map from Democrats “was drawn to discourage competition and favor Democrats.”

What arguments are being made?

Attorneys for Legislature Democrats have argued the maps were fair to Republicans and drawn to reflect declining populations in certain communities.

The court reach their decision after viewing computer simulations provided through the Republicans’ lawsuit. The simulations were conducted by election analyst Sean Trende, who determined the maps were gerrymandered.

Related: NYSIRC fails to reach consensus, redistricting falls on Democrats

What’s next for NY’s district maps?

Legislators are expected to appeal the decision to the state’s Court of Appeals, the highest court in New York. The Court of Appeals could hear the case as soon as next week.