Tuesday, January 22, 2013

Senator Henry Marsh's Statement on Yesterday's Redistricting Vote

From Virginia State Senator Henry Marsh:
RICHMOND, VA — Senator Henry L. Marsh (D-Richmond) made the following statement in response to the Senate Republicans' forcing through a partisan redistricting plan.

Republicans waited until Senator Marsh, a legendary Virginia civil rights hero and a 22-year veteran of the Senate, was away at President Obama's inauguration on Martin Luther King, Jr. Day, to ram this bill through the Senate on a 20-19 vote.

The first African-American mayor of Richmond, Senator Marsh was a leading Virginia civil rights lawyer, trying scores of school desegregation and employment discrimination cases, representing thousands of African-American clients.

Senator Henry Marsh said:

"I was outraged and I was saddened yesterday afternoon to learn that the Senate Republicans had used my absence to force through radical changes to all 40 Senate districts."

"I wanted to attend the historic second inauguration of President Obama in person. For Senate Republicans to use my absence to push through a partisan redistricting plan that hurts voters across the state is shameful.

"I've been a lawyer for over 50 years, and I'm certain these changes are unconstitutional. Also, allowing this to stand would mean that the people of Virginia could be subjected to ten different redistricting plans in a decade."

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