Friday, 19 January, 2018

Federal Court Rules North Carolina Congressional Map Unconstitutional

North Carolina Congressional Map Ruled Unconstitutionally Gerrymandered Federal judges rule NC electoral map unconstitutional
Ellis Copeland | 12 January, 2018, 17:43

A panel of judges rejected North Carolina's congressional map Tuesday, deeming it unconstitutional for the setup of its districts.

"Even though federal courts have been willing to invalidate maps that disadvantage racial or ethnic groups, in the past they have permitted maps that disadvantage a party". "I propose that we draw the maps to give a partisan advantage to 10 Republicans and three Democrats because I do not believe it's possible to draw a map with eleven Republicans and two Democrats", said Rep. David Lewis, a Harnett County Republican who is now the chair of the House redistricting committee.

Wynn coupled that finding to a defense of Mattingly and other professors involved in the case against Republican claims they'd served up a "smorgasbord of alleged "social science" theories" to undermine the existing districts.

Two cases now under consideration by the high court, one from Wisconsin and another from Maryland, may provide guidance.

"This is a hostile takeover of the North Carolina General Assembly and legislative bodies across the U.S. The unprecedented usurping of legislative authority by Judge Wynn will most certainly be stayed by the U.S. Supreme Court".

We've had three elections since the contested 2011 districts were drawn and this needs to be the last one under our current system.

This week a federal court struck down North Carolina's congressional maps after the state's Republicans conceded that they drew the maps to disenfranchise Democratic voters. But he said there was plenty of evidence to show that legislators set about "entrenching Republican candidates in power by dictating the outcome of" the election.

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The ruling was hailed by Democrats and voting rights activists including the Rev. Anthony Spearman, leader of the state NAACP, who called it "a mammoth decision". They included Wynn, who had been appointed by President Barack Obama; Earl Britt, who had been appointed by President Jimmy Carter; and William L. Osteen Jr., who had been appointed by President George W. Bush, according to the News & Observer. "The court's upcoming decision in Gill v. Whitford may in fact seek to do just this", Hicks said. A nonpartisan congressional map would likely swing at least two - and as many as five - of the Tar Heel State's House seats into the Democratic column.

In a first, federal court strikes down North...

But that, said the panel, "is not a choice the Constitution allows legislative mapdrawers to make". "It is to gain partisan advantage on the map".

Alice Ballard, attorney for the plaintiffs, declined to comment Wednesday evening, saying she and her team had not yet finished reading the judges' decision.

There's racial gerrymandering, when mapmakers draw districts that dilute the influence of a particular race or community.

State Rep. David Lewis, a lawmaker involved in the GOP's gerrymandering effort, proposed in 2016 to "draw the maps to give a partisan advantage to 10 Republicans and three Democrats because I do not believe it's possible to draw a map with 11 Republicans and two Democrats". It also names Gov. Tom Wolf, members of the General Assembly and other state officials. So to some extent it is a matter of degree, said Dr. Prysby.

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