Issue: (1) Whether the district court erred and exacerbated the constitutional difficulties with Section 5 of the Voting Rights Act of 1965 by requiring Texas to increase the number of majority-minority congressional districts in response to population growth, by treating “coalition” and “crossover” districts as protected under Section 5, and by applying a “functional” definition of retrogression that fails to give covered jurisdictions fair notice of the redistricting decisions that will be deemed to violate Section 5; (2) whether the district court erred and exacerbated the constitutional difficulties with Section 5 by finding a discriminatory purpose under the new permissive standard adopted by Congress in the 2006 reauthorization in attempting to abrogate this Court’s decision in Reno v. Bossier Parish School Bd.; (3) whether the district court erred and exacerbated the constitutional difficulties with Section 5 by allowing private intervenors to challenge the Texas Senate map, even though the Department of Justice conceded that this map was entitled to preclearance; and (4) whether the 2006 reauthorization of Section 5, as so construed, is constitutional, to the extent that the district court did not err in construing Section 5.
On Monday at 9:30 a.m. we expect orders from the October 17 Conference. We do not expect any decisions on the merits but will report promptly on any orders. The Court's next Conference is scheduled for October 31. The November sitting begins November 3.