The gurney in the the execution chamber at the Oklahoma State Penitentiary in McAlester, Okla. On Monday the Supreme Court voted 5-4 in a case from Oklahoma that the sedative midazolam can be used in executions without violating the prohibition on cruel and unusual punishment. Sue Ogrocki/AP hide caption

toggle caption Sue Ogrocki/AP

As a staff member takes down the Arizona redistricting map, Arizona Independent Redistricting Commission chair Colleen Mathis gets a hug from Frank Bergen, a Pima County Democrat, at a 2012 meeting. Ross D. Franklin/AP hide caption

toggle caption Ross D. Franklin/AP

State Reps. Barry Moore, Joe Hubbard, Rod Scott and Merika Coleman study a map of the proposed redistricting plan in May 2012 following a meeting of the Legislative Committee on Reapportionment at the Alabama Statehouse in Montgomery, Ala. Dave Martin/AP hide caption

toggle caption Dave Martin/AP

To fight hyperpartisanship and redistricting aimed at keeping politicians safe in their district, some states are experimenting with new primary voting systems. Jae C. Hong/AP hide caption

toggle caption Jae C. Hong/AP

Despite a Supreme Court ruling that gutted a key part of the Voting Rights Act, Attorney General Eric Holder wants a court to use another section of the 1965 law to require Texas to get the federal government's approval before changing its voting laws. Matt Rourke/AP hide caption

toggle caption Matt Rourke/AP

NPR thanks our sponsors

Become an NPR sponsor