On February 4th, in a 4-3 ruling, the North Carolina Supreme Court struck down NC’s legislative and Congressional maps as unconstitutionally partisan. This ruling defends the rights of every individual’s vote, regardless of race or political belief, This is fantastic news for North Carolinians and the health of our democracy.
Here are some highlights of the decision:
- By 5:00 p.m. on 2/18/22 – The General Assembly must draw a new set of Congressional and legislative maps and send them to the Superior Court. All parties in the case may also submit their preferred maps for consideration. The Superior Court will choose the maps that meet the guidelines of the North Carolina Constitution.
The Supreme Court’s ruling contains one huge change. In a monumental ruling, the General Assembly is required to also review the data on any racially polarizing voter patterns, in accordance with the Voting Rights Act. Such patterns serve to dilute the influence of people of color in voting. This will help represent voters instead of politicians. As an example, under the now-defunct maps, roughly 25% of the Black lawmakers in the state legislature would have been at risk of losing their seats in the upcoming election.
Concerning partisan gerrymandering, the Court ruled that the maps can’t diminish the power of anyone’s vote based on their party affiliation.
- By 5:00 p.m. on 2/21/22 – All parties must submit any comments to the Superior Court.
- By 12:00 p.m. on 2/23/22 – The Superior Court will choose the maps.
- By 5:00 p.m. on 2/23/22 – Parties must submit any objections to the selected maps.
Candidate filing will resume at 8:00 a.m. on Thursday, February 24th, and will close at Noon on Friday, March 4th.