Voting Rights Act

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ALEXANDRIA, Va. (AP) - The chief architect of a Republican legislative redistricting plan says race was just one of many factors used to redraw boundaries in Virginia's House of Delegates.

Delegate Chris Jones of Suffolk testified Wednesday in federal court in Alexandria. The GOP-controlled House of Delegates is defending itself in a lawsuit that alleges the 2011 redistricting unconstitutionally packed black voters into 12 legislative districts.

The lawsuit claims that packing black voters into those districts limited their influence in the rest of the state.

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The end of June saw big votes on Capitol Hill and big decisions by the United States Supreme  Court. Delmarva Public Radio's Don  Rush caught up with Eastern Shore Congressman Andy Harris (R-First District)  on his reaction to these events.

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The U.S. Supreme Court decision striking Section 4 of the 1965 Voting Rights Act will allow the Virginia Counties of Accomack and Northampton on the Eastern Shore to make electoral changes without getting pre-clearance of the federal government.

Before the ruling any such change such as redrawing electoral districts to the choice of voting machines had to wait 60 day for a decision from the U.S. Justice Department.