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Judge will dismiss Arkansas redistricting case unless DOJ joins

LITTLE ROCK, Ark. – A federal judge said Thursday he was dismissing a lawsuit challenging Arkansas’ new State House districts as diluting the influence of black voters unless the Justice Department joins the case as a complainant.

U.S. District Judge Lee Rudofsky said there was “a strong argument that at least some of the disputed districts” in the lawsuit brought by two groups violate federal suffrage law. But, in a 42-page decision, Rudofsky said he could not comment on the merits of the case and gave the Justice Department five days to join as a plaintiff before dismissing it.

“After a thorough analysis of the text and structure of the Voting Rights Act, and a careful tracing through the relevant case law, the Court has concluded that this case can only be brought by the Attorney General of the United States “, Rudofsky, who was appointed to the bench by former President Donald Trump, wrote.

The decision comes days before candidates can begin filing for state and legislative offices in Arkansas. The one-week deposit period begins on Tuesday.

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