November 18, 2021 -
Voting rights groups have challenged election districts for the Louisiana Supreme Court, which counts just one Black justice among its seven members. Legislators want to add new districts to settle the suit, but their most recent attempt broke down over the issue of how many should have majority-Black populations.
June 15, 2021 -
Federal appellate courts in the Deep South are disproportionately white compared to the region's population, but President Joe Biden has pledged to diversify the courts with his nominations. Efforts to expand the region's mostly white state appellate courts could also lead to more diversity on the bench.
April 8, 2021 -
The Texas legislature may consolidate the state's appeals courts, where Democrats have gained seats in recent elections — and watchdogs say the changes could violate the Voting Rights Act. The plan is being pushed by a big business group that has spent nearly $1 million to back GOP judicial candidates. A new West Virginia appeals court also had the support of big business.
October 5, 2020 -
Republicans in Georgia have maneuvered to stop competitive elections for some judicial and prosecutorial positions, passing a law in 2018 that gives Gov. Brian Kemp the power to fill certain vacancies. A federal judge struck down the law, but now the case is with the state Supreme Court.
November 6, 2019 -
In Texas, which has long debated changes to its system of partisan judicial elections, Republican leaders began pushing an appointment system just a few months after last year's Democratic sweep in Houston's judicial elections. One proposed bill would put an end to elected judges in urban counties.
October 24, 2019 -
When they took office, President Donald Trump and Gov. Ron DeSantis both appointed high court justices that shifted a supreme court to the right. Both executives have relied on the conservative Federalist Society to suggest nominees, and both have faced criticism for appointing mostly white judges.
April 9, 2019 -
Federal judges have — so far — halted attempts by the region's conservative state leaders to limit or block access to health care through the Affordable Care Act. But Republicans are changing U.S. Senate rules to stack those courts with conservative Trump appointees.