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Latino State News

MADLEF Warns that New Ward Map May Bring Lawsuits

The senior litigator in the Mexican-American Legal Defense and Education Fund’s Chicago office told the Chicago Sun-Times that supporters of the city’s new ward map, which creates more Latino-majority wards, is likely to have lawsuits filed against it by those who feel that their white- or black-majority wards are being dismantled.

Jorge Sanchez of MALDEF in Chicago stated that the new map might be seen as a violation of the equal protection clause in the U.S. constitution as is may appear that certain North and South Side wards are not being accurately represented.

There are 50 wards making up the city, with a population of 2,695,598, which means each ward, with population divided evenly, should have 53,912. However, with the new map, some wards have populations above and below that number, and Sanchez states this may welcome lawsuits claiming under-representation.

Others claim that if lawsuits are brought on based off of Sanchez’ reasoning, they will fail, because the law allows for a 10 percent deviation from ward population.