A federal court has wrapped up oral arguments in a Washington hearing regarding Texas' effort to adopt new election maps.
The GOP-led Legislature adopted the new district maps earlier this year to reflect population growth. But the U.S. Department of Justice says the maps for Congress and the Texas House discriminate against minority voters.
The three-judge panel listened to both sides Wednesday, but did not indicate if or when they would approve the maps.
The legal fight centers around a requirement in the Voting Rights Act that certain states with a history of discrimination, including Texas, be granted "preclearance" before changes in voting practices can be enacted.
The legal standard is whether the changes have the purpose or effect of diminishing voting rights based on race or color.
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