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The Defense Makes It's Case In A Key Redistricting Trial Regarding Compactness

Suffolk Delegate Chris Jones, who is commonly referred to as the “architect” of the 2011 House of Delegates redistricting maps, took the witness stand Tuesday (3/14). He testified there are real-world implications that aren’t necessarily factored in to expert “compactness” measurements, like the ones challengers are using to dispute some of the districts on the map.

Attorneys for the defense pointed to one of such districts with a stretched, half-ring like shape as area linked by suburbs typically found on the edges of big cities.

Arguments Resume In Richmond Circuit Compactness Lawsuit

A highly technical redistricting case continues today (3/14) in Richmond City Circuit Court. The case centers around whether the lawmakers appropriately considered the constitutional compactness requirement or gave priority to other, non constitutional factors when drawing maps after the 2010 census.

During opening statements Monday, defense lawyers argued challengers are trying to change Virginia’s redistricting process through the courts by introducing a new way to measure how compact districts are.

Khan Travel Privilege Brouhaha Shows Political Faultlines

The abrupt cancellation of a Canadian speaking engagement for Gold Star father Khizr Khan, who lives in Central Virginia, created worldwide reverberations.

“Let me ask you. Have you even read the United States Constitution?”

That challenge to Donald Trump last summer and the ultimate sacrifice by his son 13 years earlier have made Khizr Khan an in-demand speaker.

“Many people see Mr. Khan and his wife as the ultimate patriots,” said Christopher Newport University’s Quentin Kidd, who says there’s a flip side to Khan’s fame.

Congressman Brat And Virginia Attorney General React To Travel Order

President Trump has issued a new travel order affecting seven Muslim countries. Reaction from Virginia’s elected officials has been along party lines. Republicans like it, Democrat don’t.

Virginia Attorney General Mark Herring, who filed a legal challenge of the original travel order said the new one “sends a horrible message to the world.” Senators Mark Warner and Tim Kaine, also Democrats, issued statements disagreeing with President Trump.

Political Analysis for Friday, March 3, 2017

Trump uses Virginia, a state he didn’t carry, as a backdrop for his proposed military buildup. On Thursday (3/2), Trump visits Newport News Shipbuilding, one of the state’s biggest manufacturers; among its biggest employers and one likely to prosper under Trump’s call for a 10 percent increase in the Pentagon budget.

Democratic congressman whose district includes shipyard, Bobby Scott, welcomes the proposed buildup as jobs-generator, but objects to financing Defense Department with cuts in human services.

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