House Minority Leader Hakeem Jeffries (D-N.Y.) said Thursday that he will “respect” whatever “judicial decision is rendered” by the courts ahead of arguments scheduled later in the day over the state’s congressional maps.
A New York appeals court is set to hear arguments in a case seeking to have the bipartisan Independent Redistricting Commission (IRC) redraw the state’s congressional maps, which comes after Republicans flipped a handful of key seats in the Empire State last November.
The state’s congressional maps were ultimately drawn by a court-appointed special master after efforts to have the lines drawn by both the IRC and state legislature were thwarted.
“What is clear to me is that the notion that the people of the state of New York should be forced to make decisions as to who represents them based on a partisan map drawn by an unelected, out-of-town special master, signed off on by a right-wing judge, who was hand-selected in a forum shopping exercise by partisan Republicans is ridiculous,” Jeffries said during his weekly press conference.
“What the legal case is in terms of how that resolves itself on the merits, I leave to the lawyers and ultimately the judges, and I will respect whatever … judicial decision is rendered,” he added.
Democrats are eyeing New York in their bid to take back the House in 2024, with one group planning to allocate tens of millions of dollars in the state.
Rep. Mike Lawler (R-N.Y.) — who unseated former Rep. Sean Patrick Maloney (N.Y.), who served as the chairman of the House Democrats’ campaign arm last cycle — responded to Jeffries’s comments on Twitter, saying Jeffries “should respect the judicial decision that was rendered last year.”
“[T]he courts smacked down Dems brazen attempt to gerrymander NY’s maps, giving us a fair & competitive map. Run better candidates and offer a better vision instead of trying to rig the map again,” he added.