Virginia House of Delegates Speaker Kirk Cox, R-Colonial Heights, canceled a floor session scheduled for Oct. 21 and 22 after Gov. Ralph Northam, a Democrat, announced plans to veto a Republican-drafted map to fix 11 House districts a court has ruled were racially gerrymandered.
Cox filed a status report with the Eastern District Court “noting the governor’s intent to veto any legislative efforts at bipartisan collaboration,” his office said in a statement.
“I am rescinding my call for the House of Delegates to reconvene because I do not think we should waste legislators’ time or taxpayer money on a session when the governor’s mind is evidently made up,” Cox said. “There was clear progress being made toward a bipartisan legislative solution, and while we wish those efforts could continue it’s obvious that both the governor and the Democratic leadership would rather have federal judges draw the map than allow the legislature to fulfill its constitutional responsibility.”
Northam has called for letting the court handle the maps and a constitutional amendment to create a nonpartisan redistricting commission.