Shaw v. Hunt, 517 U.S. 899, 22 (1996)

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Stevens, J., dissenting

rather than to redress any racially discriminatory treatment that the electoral process has imposed. In this instance, therefore, I shall consider the standing question in light of the majority's assertions about the nature of the underlying constitutional challenge.

I begin by noting that this case reveals the Shaw claim to be useful less as a tool for protecting against racial discrimination than as a means by which state residents may second-guess legislative districting in federal court for partisan ends. The plaintiff-intervenors in this case are Republicans. It is apparent from the record that their real grievance is that they are represented in Congress by Democrats when they would prefer to be represented by members of their own party. They do not suggest that the racial identity of their representatives is a matter of concern, but it is obvious that their political identity is critical. See Pope v. Blue, 809 F. Supp. 392 (WDNC 1992).

Significantly, from the outset of the legislative deliberations, the Republican Party did not oppose the creation of more than one majority-minority district. Indeed, several plans proposed by the Republicans in the state legislature provided two such districts. 861 F. Supp. 408, 460 (EDNC 1994). However, now that the State has created a district that is designed to preserve Democratic incumbents, and now that the plaintiff-intervenors' partisan gerrymandering suit has been dismissed for failure to state a claim, these intervenors have joined this racial gerrymandering challenge.

It is plain that these intervenors are using their allegations of impermissibly race-based districting to achieve the same substantive result that their previous, less emotionally charged partisan gerrymandering challenge failed to secure. In light of the amorphous nature of the race discrimination claim recognized in Shaw I, it is inevitable that allegations of racial gerrymandering will become a standard means by which unsuccessful majority-race candidates, and their par-

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