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Expand chart
Data: Ballotpedia; Chart: Will Chase/Axios

More than half of the state supreme courts in the United States have a majority of justices affiliated with the Republican Party, according to a Ballotpedia study.

Why it matters: Gerrymandering challenges amid this year's redistricting process and disputes about changes to voting rights — issues with the potential to radically change future election outcomes — would, in some cases, be heard by these courts.

By the numbers: About 52% of the 341 state justices Ballotpedia studied are affiliated with the GOP, compared to a third affiliated with Democrats. The researchers were unable to determine partisan affiliations for the remaining 49.

  • Eight of the nine justices on Washington state's court of last resort were found to be affiliated with the Democratic Party — more than any other state.
  • Texas has the most Republican-affiliated justices, with 18 out of 18 in its two courts of last resort.

Go deeper

Updated Sep 9, 2021 - Politics & Policy

Justice Department is suing Texas over new abortion ban

Pro-choice protesters march down Congress Avenue at a protest outside the Texas state Capitol on May 29, 2021, in Austin, Texas. Photo: Sergio Flores/Getty Images 

The Justice Department has sued Texas over its new law banning abortions after six weeks, Attorney General Merrick Garland said in an announcement Thursday, calling the law "clearly unconstitutional."

Driving the news: The lawsuit comes after Garland vowed to "protect those seeking to obtain or provide reproductive health services," adding that "[w]e will not tolerate violence against those seeking to obtain or provide reproductive health services."

GOP Rep. Gonzalez retires in face of Trump-backed primary

Ohio Rep. Anthony Gonzalez (R) Photographer: Stefani Reynolds/Bloomberg via Getty Images

Ohio Rep. Anthony Gonzalez (R) announced his retirement on Thursday, declining to run against a Trump-backed primary challenger in 2022.

Why it matters: Gonzalez has suffered politically since siding with House Democrats to impeach the 45th president after the Capitol riot.

Swing voters oppose Texas abortion law

Protesters at a rally at the Texas State Capitol. Photo: Jordan Vonderhaar/Getty Images

All 10 swing voters in Axios’ latest focus groups — including those who described themselves as "pro-life" — said they oppose Texas' new anti-abortion law.

Why it matters: If their responses reflect larger patterns in U.S. society, this could hurt Republicans with women and independents in next year's midterm elections. The swing voters cited overreach, invasion of privacy and concerns about frivolous lawsuits jamming up the courts.

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