Expedited Schedule and Additional Plaintiffs for Lawsuit
On Monday, June 13, a federal judge agreed to an expedited schedule for the Jeff Thomas lawsuit and ordered the parties to make their initial filings by early July. Judge David J. Novak also criticized both the Herring and Miyares Attorney Generals offices for delays. A Virginia Mercury article quoted Judge Novak, “Had the state not bogged down the case, the legal issues could’ve been resolved last fall.”
Then on Thursday, June 16, WRIC ABC8News reported that the Rev. Michelle C. Thomas, current president of the Loudoun County NAACP, and former chapter president Phillip Thompson had joined the Jeff Thomas lawsuit as plaintiffs.
Unlike the previous Goldman case, “the plaintiffs in the new lawsuit are voters living in some of the most overpopulated districts and argue that their votes in 2021 were weakened compared to voters in the least populous district.
The amended lawsuit alleges the state’s decision to hold elections under the old districts violated the Equal Protection Clause of the Fourteenth Amendment and the Voting Rights Act because the plaintiffs and other similarly-situated residents were underrepresented. It calls for for primary elections to be held on or before Sept. 13, 2022, and to hold the state House elections on Nov. 8, 2022, when the congressional midterms will be held.”