By Annie Linskey, The Baltimore Sun
An Iowa-based foundation is financing a federal lawsuit that seeks to overturn Maryland’s new congressional map on the grounds that it unconstitutionally splits minority communities.
Christopher Rants, a Republican former speaker of the Iowa House who heads the Legacy Foundation, confirmed that the group is paying for the legal challenge, filed Thursday in U.S. District Court in Greenbelt.
“When I saw the maps, I was just incredulous,” Rants said in a telephone interview. “We don’t do things like that out here.”
The foundation — which has previously defended Arizona’s contentious immigration law — was created to “advance individual liberty, free enterprise and limited, accountable government,” according its website.
The lawsuit, organized by a Prince George’s County political action committee, alleges that Gov. Martin O’Malley and the Democratic controlled General Assembly drew congressional districts that broke apart black neighborhoods to benefit white Democratic candidates.