After last week’s sham hearings—one on the coast, one in Raleigh and one in Hickory—Republicans on the NC House and Senate Redistricting Committees are now at work on creating new voting districts for the State House and Senate and for U.S. Congress.
In a clearly purple state like North Carolina, where roughly half of all votes cast end up going to Democrats and half to Republicans, the results of elections should reflect that. For example, of our 14 Congressional districts, we should expect to see a more or less 7-to-7 split in election results between Republican and Democratic candidates. But when politicians create gerrymandered districts around partisan interests, the results can be skewed as much as 10 to 4 or even 11 to 3 with the exact same individual votes cast.
That kind of result is the express intent of the current Republican leadership in the NCGA.
The maps they draw this fall will help decide which candidates we have to choose from in 2024, whether Republicans keep a supermajority in the legislature and very likely even who controls Congress. And these are maps we’ll be living with until after the 2030 census.
That’s why speaking up now is urgent.
At last week’s Redistricting hearing in Raleigh, 17-year-old Eric Willoughby drove two-and-a-half hours to speak out against secretive, rigged maps, ending with this warning to legislators: “Be very careful in what you choose to do, because young people like me are watching. And young people like me are fed up.” (To listen to Eric’s speech and other outstanding comments at the hearing, see NC Newsline’s “Five standout speeches from North Carolina’s final public hearing on redistricting.”)
Legislative leaders say new voting maps could be released and pushed through as early as the week of October 9.
Take Action NOW!
Submit a public comment in support of fair maps at https://www.ncleg.gov/RequestForComments/45.
For more, see our Redistricting Action Alert here.