Baker v. Carr, 369 U.S. 186 (1962), was a landmark United States Supreme Court case that retreated from the Court's political question doctrine, deciding that redistricting (attempts to change the way voting districts are delineated) issues present justiciable questions, thus enabling federal courts to intervene in and to decide reapportionment cases. The defendants unsuccessfully argued that reapportionment of legislative districts is a "political question", and hence not a question that may be resolved by federal courts. Plaintiff Charles Baker was a Republican who lived in Shelby County, Tennessee, the county in which Memphis is located. The Tennessee State Constitution required that legislative districts be redrawn every ten years according to the federal census to provide for districts of substantially equal population. Baker's complaint was that Tennessee had not in fact redistricted since the census of 1901.
Contributions by Rlquall, Hydriotaphia, and ClueBot.