Texas AG criticizes court's redistricting maps

By CHRIS TOMLINSON | November 18, 2011 | 6:15 PM EST

AUSTIN, Texas (AP) — The Texas attorney general has sharply criticized a federal court over proposed maps for the state House and Senate districts.

A federal court invited parties to comment on the redistricting maps on Friday. Attorney General Gregg Abbott said the San Antonio-based court overstepped its bounds. In a court filing, Abbott accused the judges of wrongfully overruling the Legislature and trying to set policy, rather than following the law.

Minority groups have challenged the Republican-drawn maps, saying they are discriminatory.

In a different case, a federal court in Washington refused to approve the legislative and congressional maps Texas lawmakers drew up and ordered the San Antonio court to draw temporary maps for the 2012 election.

Abbott has said the Legislature's maps are fair and should be respected.