Gaffney v. Cummings, 412 U.S. 735 (1973)

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Author: U.S. Supreme Court

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Gaffney v. Cummings, 412 U.S. 735 (1973)

Gaffney v. Cummings


No. 71-1476


Argued February 26-27, 1973
Decided June 18, 1973
412 U.S. 735

APPEAL FROM THE UNITED STATES DISTRICT COURT
FOR THE DISTRICT OF CONNECTICUT

Syllabus

Connecticut’s legislative apportionment plan was held by the District Court to be unconstitutional because partisan political structuring had resulted in excessive population deviations in the House districting.

Held:

1. Minor deviations from mathematical equality among state legislative districts do not make out a prima facie case of invidious discrimination under the Equal Protection Clause of the Fourteenth Amendment, and in this case, where the House districts deviated on the average by 1.9% and the maximum deviation was 7.83%, a prima facie case was not made out. Pp. 740-751.

2. A "political fairness principle" that achieves a rough approximation of the state-wide political strengths of the two major parties does not violate the Equal Protection Clause. Pp. 751-754.

341 F.Supp. 139, reversed.

WHITE, J., delivered the opinion of the Court, in which BURGER, C.J., and STEWART, BLACKMUN, POWELL, and REHNQUIST, JJ., joined. BRENNAN, J., filed a dissenting opinion, in which DOUGLAS and MARSHALL, JJ., joined, post, p. 772.

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Chicago: U.S. Supreme Court, "Syllabus," Gaffney v. Cummings, 412 U.S. 735 (1973) in 412 U.S. 735 Original Sources, accessed April 17, 2024, http://www.originalsources.com/Document.aspx?DocID=8FJK351KUWZJ9LR.

MLA: U.S. Supreme Court. "Syllabus." Gaffney v. Cummings, 412 U.S. 735 (1973), in 412 U.S. 735, Original Sources. 17 Apr. 2024. http://www.originalsources.com/Document.aspx?DocID=8FJK351KUWZJ9LR.

Harvard: U.S. Supreme Court, 'Syllabus' in Gaffney v. Cummings, 412 U.S. 735 (1973). cited in 1973, 412 U.S. 735. Original Sources, retrieved 17 April 2024, from http://www.originalsources.com/Document.aspx?DocID=8FJK351KUWZJ9LR.