Supreme Court Rejects NC Congressional Districts

They pointed to statements by legislative leaders and others that the point of CD 12 was to pack democratic voters into CD 12 so they could not influence elections in the surrounding districts.

North Carolina is (unofficially) the GOP's policy lab in that numerous party's more controversial policies are first tested there. They redrew the maps in 2016. The justices unanimously rejected the "reshuffle" of voters in District 1 and voted 5-3 to reject that of District 12. The court ruled that two districts in North Carolina are unconstitutional because they intentionally gerrymandered an inordinate percentage of African-Americans into the districts in order to diminish minority voting power in other districts.

North Carolina has had problems with these districts before. The decision upheld a lower court's ruling from last February. Election experts said the decision could help similar challenges in other southern states. "To be specific, the new District 12 had 35,000 more African-Americans of voting age and 50,000 fewer whites of that age", Justice Kagan wrote.

The court did so as to both districts, she noted, in part due to the deferential review that the Supreme Court gives to factual conclusions reached by lower courts.

"We by no means 'insist that a state legislature, when redistricting, determine precisely what percent minority population demands.' But neither will we approve a racial gerrymander whose necessity is supported by no evidence and whose raison d'être is a legal mistake". At the time, progressives viewed Shaw and its predecessors as an assault on the VRA-a Republican effort to prevent states from helping black voters choose their own representatives. In North Carolina, for instance, roughly two-thirds of white voters cast their ballots for Republicans, while some 90 percent of African-Americans vote Democratic.

Calling the move "a watershed moment in the fight to end racial gerrymandering", former attorney general Eric Holder said North Carolina's maps "were among the worst racial gerrymanders in the nation".

"This is part of a court project over 30 years now of trying to see that race is not used in the design of election districts any more than is absolutely necessary", said Richard H. Pildes, a law professor at New York University.

The ruling was a rebuke to North Carolina Republicans but the districts in question have already been re-drawn.


Student voter registration and turnout generated by HBCUs could now impact representation in several districts throughout the state. "Today's ruling sends a stark message to legislatures and governors around the country: Racial gerrymandering is illegal and will be struck down in a court of law". For this reason, although CD 12 was a crossover district in North Carolina's previous districting plan, there is no guarantee that it will be such a district in any future plan.

Justice Samuel Alito penned a dissent in the case, joined by Chief Justice John Roberts and Justice Anthony Kennedy. "A precedent of this court should not be treated like a disposable household item - say, a paper plate of napkin - to be used once and then tossed in the trash", Alito argued.

Writing for the court, Justice Elena Kagan said the state failed to offer compelling justification for why it so deliberately grouped black voters into the districts at the center of the legal dispute.

Kagan, along with liberal Justices Ginsberg, Sotomayor and Breyer, plus conservative Justice Clarence Thomas, found race was the factor.

Third, the court's ruling on CD 12 is important because the court's view of racial predominance is just as likely to disrupt a gerrymander that favors Democrats as one that favors Republicans.

On District 1, which was 52.7 percent black when it was created in 2010, the ruling was unanimous.

Nevertheless, Monday's ruling is a significant victory in a state that has been ground zero in the battle over voting rights.


Popular
  • Planned Parenthood files suit against new abortion legislation

    Planned Parenthood files suit against new abortion legislation

    The Republican governor tapped McClelland to lead the effort shortly after taking office in January. Those four health centers are in Burlington, Keokuk, the Quad Cities and Sioux City.
    NASCAR's Aric Almirola out 8-12 weeks with broken back

    NASCAR's Aric Almirola out 8-12 weeks with broken back

    He said he saw the fire on Danica Patrick's auto and when he felt an intense burning sensation in his back, coupled with pain, he thought his vehicle also was burning.
    Paul Nuttall Keeps Calling Leanne Wood 'Natalie' During ITV Leaders' Debate

    Paul Nuttall Keeps Calling Leanne Wood 'Natalie' During ITV Leaders' Debate

    Jeremy Corbyn, the leader of the main opposition Labour Party, also declined to attend the debate, citing May's absence. He said: 'The Brexit negotiation between Brussels and London will have outcomes none of us can predict.
  • Gibson out, Bernier makes 1st playoff start in net for Ducks

    With every game, the Predators kept pounding away and applying more dents on their opponent until the Ducks finally caved in. They used up all their sweat equity in tying the Predators, 3-3, in the third period and even had a power play after that.
    Charlie Hunnam, Eric Bana Highlight Royal Affair at 'King Arthur' Premiere

    Charlie Hunnam, Eric Bana Highlight Royal Affair at 'King Arthur' Premiere

    A new clip from King Arthur: Legend Of The Sword has been officially released by Warner Bros. King Arthur: Legend of the Sword hits theaters on May 12th.
    The gorgeous Aishwarya Rai arrives at Cannes with daughter Aaradhya

    The gorgeous Aishwarya Rai arrives at Cannes with daughter Aaradhya

    And if you're an Aishwarya Rai Bachchan fan, you don't have to wait too long now to see the icon light up the French Riviera too. With lovely Deepika Padukone making a style statement at Cannes, Aishwarya too has departed for the 70 edition of Cannes.
  • Stanley Cup playoffs: Josi's late goal gives Predators 2-1 series lead

    He robbed James Neal with just over two minutes left in the second, appearing to stop Neal's shot with the shaft of his stick. Oh, they attempted to show more life early on Sunday, although, frankly, it would have been hard for that not to happen.

    Wenger's Arsenal future to be decided after FA Cup final

    But I do believe, after the departures of Ashley Cole and Sol Campbell in 2006, a lot was lost and never recaptured. Arsenal's Chilean striker Alexis Sanchez is quite in demand among big clubs across all leagues.
    Wet weather lingering in Colorado Springs area

    Wet weather lingering in Colorado Springs area

    The highest reported snow total was 38.5 inches (97.79 centimetres) near Ward, Colorado, the National Weather Service said. Because we're due for what could be a significant blast of snow now through Friday evening.
  • Macron's new centrist party stretches lead, survey shows

    Macron's new centrist party stretches lead, survey shows

    He denied being in favour of making all countries that use the euro liable for other individual countries' existing debt. Richard Ferrand, the former Socialist who helped Macron create his party, spent two years at high school in Germany.
    Ford using first over-the-air software updates to its 2016 cars

    Ford using first over-the-air software updates to its 2016 cars

    Ford announced the update in a release touting the new compatibilities, which will be available to an estimated 800,000 vehicles . One way is to simply go to your local Ford dealership and have one of its service employees install the update for you.

    Tories claim they could win 15 seats in Scotland at general election

    Meanwhile polls have warned that Labour, which won a majority in four councils five years ago, could be facing "heavy losses". On average the party's share of the vote has been up ten points on 2012 in such contests.

CONNECT