(The Center Square) – The saga over a Congressional district map in Maryland has come to a close.
Republican Gov. Larry Hogan signed Senate Bill 1012 into law Monday afternoon, Kata Hall Burke, the governor’s deputy communications director, announced in a late Monday morning tweet.
Burke tweeted, “The defendants, through the Office of the Attorney General, have agreed to withdraw their appeal of Judge Battaglia’s decision in the congressional redistricting case.”
Burke then issued a second tweet stating Hogan would “sign the new congressional map into law today.”
Attorney General Brian Frosh said he was pleased to see the issue settled.
“We are pleased Governor Hogan has agreed to sign the proposed congressional redistricting map approved by the General Assembly,” the state’s top law enforcement official said in a statement. “This map, like the one previously passed by the General Assembly, is Constitutional and fair. Both sides have agreed to dismiss their appeals, and our state can move forward to the primary election.”
Senate Bill 1012 will establish Congressional districts in the state. The Anne Arundel County Circuit Court on March 25 invalidated the map that was enacted on Dec. 9, 2021. The court then ordered the General Assembly to draw new maps by a March 30 deadline. The map was introduced on March 28 for consideration by the voting body and was ratified.
The bill would set eight districts for the U.S. House of Representatives in the state.
In December 2021, the debate over the maps between the General Assembly and the governor came to a head. Hogan vetoed the Legislature-designed maps calling them “disgracefully gerrymandered redistricting maps” and calling them a “shameful violation of state and federal law.”
The General Assembly then overrode Hogan’s veto, causing Hogan to state that the courts would decide the fate of the maps and the districts it holds.
“This is just the beginning,” Hogan wrote. “The courts will be the final arbiter, not the partisan Legislature. These maps cannot, and will not, stand.”
Through the debate between the governor and the General Assembly, the Court of Appeals of Maryland issued an order to move the primary election to July 19. The decision also extended to 9 p.m. April 15 the deadline for filing certificates of candidacy, the deadline to withdraw certificates of candidacy to April 18.