10/25/11 – A three-judge panel in Milwaukee has refused to drop a lawsuit that challenges Wisconsin’s newly-drawn congressional and state legislative districts. Former Democratic Senate leader Judy Robson, former Congressman Al Baldus, and over a dozen others filed suit earlier this year – even before Republicans approved the boundaries they drew with no Democratic support. The state Justice Department asked that the lawsuit be dropped, and that the Republican-drawn districts prevail. But the judges said the plaintiffs have the legal right to challenge the redistricting – and their allegations warrant that the case continue to be heard in the courts. Republicans said the new maps accurately reflect population changes revealed in the 2010 Census. But Democrats and other critics said the G-O-P drew the boundaries in a way that gives them the possible chance of winning elections all the way through the next decade. In the lawsuit, the plaintiffs said almost 300-thousand people won’t be able to vote in next year’s Senate elections, because they’ve been thrown into different districts which don’t have contests until 2014.