Alaska Supreme Court orders use of interim map for elections

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JUNEAU, Alaska (AP) — The Alaska Supreme Court said Tuesday that it has affirmed a lower court ruling that the board tasked with redrawing the state's political boundaries had "again engaged in unconstitutional political gerrymandering” and ordered a new map be used for this year's elections.

Superior Court Judge Thomas Matthews, in a ruling last week, said a majority of members on the Alaska Redistricting Board appeared to have adopted a map that splits the Eagle River area into two Senate districts for “political reasons.” He ordered a new map to be used this year. The map that Matthews ordered the board to adopt in part pairs the Eagle River area House districts into a Senate district and was the other option the board had considered when it was weighing revisions in response to a prior order by the state Supreme Court.

The Supreme Court, in its order Tuesday, affirmed Matthews' order on the adoption of the new map. The decision came just over a week before the June 1 filing deadline for the August primaries.

Becky Bohrer, The Associated Press

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