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May 7 hearing set for Ark. redistricting lawsuit

A federal judge has scheduled a May 7 trial over a lawsuit that challenges the boundaries of a newly redrawn state Senate district in eastern Arkansas.

LITTLE ROCK, Ark. (AP) — A federal judge has scheduled a May 7 trial over a lawsuit that challenges the boundaries of a newly redrawn state Senate district in eastern Arkansas.

That's the same day early voting begins in Arkansas for the May 22 primary election. In an order issued Tuesday, U.S. District Judge Leon Holmes scheduled the bench trial in Helena-West Helena to begin at 9:15 a.m. May 7.

The lawsuit was filed by state Sen. Jack Crumbly and other east Arkansas residents. It claims that the new boundaries for Crumbly's district — which was redrawn after the 2010 Census — are discriminatory. The suit claims the changes lower the percentage of voting-age blacks from 58 percent to 53 percent. It asks for an injunction forcing the state to redraw the districts.

 

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