Lawsuit: Mississippi legislative district dilutes black vote - WLOX.com - The News for South Mississippi

Lawsuit: Mississippi legislative district dilutes black vote

By EMILY WAGSTER PETTUS
Associated Press

JACKSON, Miss. (AP) - A new federal lawsuit says a state Senate district in Mississippi dilutes black voting power and should be redrawn.

The suit, filed Monday, asks a judge to order legislators to reconfigure the district before the 2019 state elections.

The district has a 51 percent black voting-age population, and the suit says it lacks "real electoral opportunity" for African-Americans.

District 22 has been represented since January 2004 by Republican Sen. Eugene "Buck" Clarke of Hollandale, who is white and is chairman of the Senate Appropriations Committee.

The district is more than 100 miles (161 kilometers) long, stretching through parts of six counties from the Delta down into the affluent Jackson suburbs of Madison County.

Clarke says all of Mississippi's legislative districts were approved by the Justice Department under then-President Barack Obama.

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