Late this afternoon, the panel in the consolidated San Antonio case rejected efforts by the Texas GOP congressional delegation to prevent turnover of written communications between the delegation and members of the Texas Legislature and its staff.
Rejecting claims that the communications were protected by the Constitution’s Speech and Debate Clause, the panel held that redistricting was not a matter which impacted the delegation’s federal legislative duties and, therefore, any communications about redistricting were “not part of the ‘deliberative and communicative process’ … [t]he [delegation’s] communications with the Texas legislators concern the state legislators’ action involving redistricting within Texas. This was not proposed legislation or some other subject within Congress’ constitutional jurisdiction.”
The panel also rejected the delegation’s claim that some of the communications were protected by the attorney-client privilege, reasoning that the privilege had been waived when communications were disclosed to Republican members of the Texas Legislature or legislative staff.
Here’s a copy of the panel’s order: