aaldef files complaint on behalf of asian american voters

Last week in New York, the Asian American Legal Defense and Education Fund filed a complaint on behalf of four Asian American voters, saying their voting power is unfairly limited by the way the state's legislative districts are drawn: Asian-American voters get the shaft in NY because of political district lines: Suit.

The complaint urges the Brooklyn Federal Court to adopt a redistricting plan that provides Asian Americans in New York with equal political representation. Here's AALDEF's press release: AALDEF Files Complaint on Behalf of Asian American Voters in New York Redistricting Case .
Over the past decade, the Asian American population in New York has grown dramatically to almost 1.5 million, or 7.3% of the state. In New York City alone, the Asian American population increased 32% to over one million. In Queens, the Asian American population grew 300 times faster than the rest of the borough, to 500,000 residents. "The current political maps -- drawn a decade ago – do not take into account this growth, leaving Asian Americans severely underrepresented,"said Glenn D. Magpantay, Director of AALDEF's Democracy Program. "The current district lines are invalid under the U.S. Constitution and state law because Asian Americans' votes count less than the votes of other New Yorkers.”

However, the New York State Legislative Task Force on Demographic Research and Reapportionment (LATFOR) and the New York State Legislature, the two entities charged with redrawing district lines, have not released new maps in time for the 2012 primaries. AALDEF's complaint requests that an independent party or "Special Master"be appointed to redraw districts immediately.

"The Asian American community must be represented in the NY redistricting process because its political power is particularly weakened by the current district lines,"said Jerry Vattamala, Staff Attorney at AALDEF's Democracy Program. "Asian Americans voters constitute a majority only in one NY state assembly district and not a single state senate or Congressional district. No Asian American has ever been elected to the NY state senate or the U.S. Congress.”
To read the rest of the statement, go to the AALDEF website here. And download the Complaint-In-Intervention here.

angry archive