Mon., December 26, 2011 4:44pm (EST)

Olens Vows To Defend Redistricting
By Orlando Montoya
Updated: 2 years ago

SAVANNAH, Ga.  —  
Georgia Attorney General is seen in this photo taken at Savannah City Hall.  (photo Orlando Montoya)
Georgia Attorney General is seen in this photo taken at Savannah City Hall. (photo Orlando Montoya)
Georgia Attorney General Sam Olens says, he'll vigorously defend Georgia's redistricting maps in court if plans to challenge them come through.

Democrats say, they intend to fight new politcal boundaries pre-approved Friday by the US Justice Department.

Democrats say, the new maps reduce black and Latino voting strength by creating a Republican super-majority in the state assembly.

Olens, a Republican, says, the maps meet Voting Rights Act requirements.

"I would suggest to you, at the point that the state Democratic party is taking a more extreme position than the Obama Justice Department, that doesn't bode well for the state Democratic party down below," Olens says. "The legal standard is whether you assure one man, one vote, whether you make sure there's no retrogression, whether you make sure there are communities of interest. If more people vote Republican, that's their right."

Unless blocked in court, Georgia will use the maps to divide voters in next year's elections.

Among other changes, the boundaries move the last white Democratic US Congressman in the Deep South, John Barrow, out of Savannah, giving him fewer Democrats in his district.

Under the 1960's Voting Rights Act, Georgia and other states with a history of discrimination must have their maps pre-appoved by the US Justice Department.