JACKSON, Miss. (AP) — A federal appeals court is telling Mississippi lawmakers to redraw a state Senate district where a judge found that black residents’ voting power had been diluted.
The 5th U.S. Circuit Court of Appeals gave the order Friday, denying a request by state officials to delay the impact of a ruling that U.S. District Judge Carlton Reeves issued last month.
Reeves said Senate District 22 should be redrawn because it fails to give African-American voters an “equal opportunity” to elect a candidate of their choice.
Three black residents sued the state over the composition of the district that stretches from the majority-black Delta into majority-white Madison County.
The district has a 51 percent black voting-age population and a white senator, Republican Buck Clarke of Hollandale, who’s not seeking re-election this year.