In a unanimous opinion, the Supreme Court upheld the one-man, one-vote principle in the Constitution despite conservatives' best effort to disenfranchise voters by challenging it.
In a unanimous result, the court said a state can draw legislative districts based on total population. At issue in the case was the "one person, one vote" principle dating back to the 1960s, when the court held that state legislative districts must be drawn so they are equal in population.
But, until Monday, justices never specified whether that doctrine applied to the general population or to the voting population. All states currently draw lines based on general population, but two conservative plaintiffs from Texas argued their vote was being diluted in relation to other districts that had the same number of people but fewer voters.
The Obama administration and state of Texas opposed the lawsuit. Civil rights groups watched the case carefully, fearful that if the court were to rule with the plaintiffs, it could potentially shift power from urban areas -- districts that tend to include a higher percentage of individuals not eligible to vote such as non-citizens, released felons and children -- to rural areas that are more likely to favor Republicans.
Justice Ruth Bader Ginsburg wrote the opinion.
"The rule appellants urge has no mooring in the Equal Protection Clause. The Texas Senate map, we therefore conclude, complies with the requirements of the one-person, one-vote principle," Ginsburg wrote. "Because history, precedent, and practice suffice to reveal the infirmity of appellants' claims, we need not and do not resolve whether, as Texas now argues, States may draw districts to equalize voter-eligible population rather than total population."
I'm sure this won't be the last time they try to suppress and disenfranchise voters, but at least this question is settled for good now.