Supreme Court Miniseries: Drawing the Line on the Independent State Legislature Theory

In the Public Interest

Aug 15 2023 • 15 mins

In the Public Interest is excited to present the final episode in our miniseries examining landmark decisions recently issued by the United States Supreme Court. The final episode explores the Court’s decision in Moore v. Harper, a case involving control over electoral redistricting by state legislatures.

In the episode, co-host Felicia Ellsworth is joined by Partner Seth Waxman, a former United States Solicitor General who focuses his practice at WilmerHale on appellate and Supreme Court litigation. Ellsworth and Waxman discuss the legal theory known as “independent state legislature theory” at the core of the case and provide an overview of previous cases in which the Court considered similar legal questions. Waxman describes WilmerHale’s role filing an amicus brief representing the Democratic leadership of both the North Carolina House of Representatives and the North Carolina Senate. They also attempt to preview the implications of the Court’s decision on electoral maps beyond the state of North Carolina. The episode concludes with Ellsworth and Waxman highlighting notable points from the oral argument and dissenting opinions in Moore.

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