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Trial ordered for challenge to redistricting

MADISON — A three-judge panel has ordered that a federal lawsuit challenging Wisconsin’s redistricting of state legislative districts go to trial.

The judges on Thursday denied a motion filed by the state Department of Justice to dismiss the lawsuit, which was brought by a group of Democrats. They argue the maps for the state Assembly drawn by Republicans in 2011 were gerrymandered to benefit the GOP.

The judges say it would be premature to decide the case before a trial because of factual disputes over how to determine if there was a violation of the Constitution.

The trial is set to begin May 24 in U.S. District Court in Madison and last no more than three days.

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