Tags: north carolina | redistricting | republicans | democrats

New NC Redistricting Maps Likely to Favor Republicans Ahead of 2020

two politicians stand before a map of north carolina districts

(Corey Lowenstein/The News & Observer via AP)

By    |   Thursday, 19 September 2019 11:29 AM

New political maps that North Carolina’s General Assembly approved earlier this week will likely still favor Republicans ahead of the elections in 2020, according to analysts, The News & Observer reports.

A panel of judges ordered the state legislature to redraw a number of districts from their 2017 maps that it said violated voters’ constitutional rights — maps that had been redrawn in 2011 for the same reason. Nearly all Republicans supported the newly redrawn maps and Democrats were split, the newspaper reported.

The final decision on the maps will be decided by the same panel of three judges who ordered them redrawn and will likely take place in the coming days. The state’s constitution forbids a veto by the governor, currently Democrat Gov. Roy Cooper.

The new maps could affect 2020 elections, but analysts predict Republicans will still hold onto the majority, even though some districts are considered toss-ups.

Stephen Wolf, a redistricting analyst for the liberal website Daily Kos, predicted if the state had a repeat of the 2016 elections, Republicans would still hold onto a majority in the state. He voiced criticism of the new maps, stating, “many of the districts in both chambers still bear the signs of partisan gerrymandering, in violation of the court’s order.”

However, what differed during this year’s process was the amount of transparency, which allowed the public to see what normally has taken place behind closed doors. Several Democrats called the effort fair amid a tense political climate.

“These are the fairest maps, and this was the fairest process, in North Carolina in my lifetime,” Charlotte Democratic Sen. Jeff Jackson said of the Senate maps, but added he felt that any maps should not be drawn by politicians.

Most Senate Democrats voted for the maps and Sen. Dan Blue, the state’s top Democrat, called the effort “a remarkable experience, especially when you consider the current political climate.”

There was less bipartisan agreement in the House where members argued the process did not allow for public hearings. Currently Republicans hold a 29-21 majority in the Senate and a 65-55 majority in the House.

However, Republican Sen. Ralph Hise, the top Senate redistricting official, said he felt the new maps met the court’s criteria and lauded the end result.

“We have drawn these maps without any consideration of partisan data,” Hise said. “We have drawn this map without any consideration of racial data.”

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New political maps that North Carolina's General Assembly approved earlier this week will likely still favor Republicans ahead of the elections in 2020, according to analysts, The News & Observer reports. A panel of judges ordered the state legislature to redraw a number of...
north carolina, redistricting, republicans, democrats
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2019-29-19
Thursday, 19 September 2019 11:29 AM
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