Doph v. Munro, 1982
In 1982 Everett voter Peggy Doph, along with fellow Everett residents, filed
suit against the state for the Legislature's 1982 congressional redistricting
plan. Doph and others were upset that district lines placed Everett in a more
Seattle-oriented district than the one in which Everett had previously been.
The court did rule in 1983 that the Legislature's congressional plan allowed
for too much population variance. But their decision to throw out the
Legislature's 1982 plan is not what makes Doph v. Munro notable. Rather, it is
the reaction the ruling set off: weary of the constant battles in the Capitol
building and the courtroom, legislators voted in 1983 to turn the task of
redistricting over to an independent commission. Their vision became
constitutional law by a vote of the people. The legacy of Doph v. Munro is that
is was the last court case of its kind: a battle between voters and legislators
where courts had to intervene.