The new maps are in, and they suck.
Well, they mostly suck. Republicans in the NC House were able to control some of their otherwise unbridled greed to make a somewhat reasonable redistricting map: In 120 districts, most incumbents will be able to keep their seats. Out of 120 seats, the final count has 55 safe Republican seats, 42 safe Democrat seats and 24 competitive seats, about half of which lean slightly to the right. There is, however slight, still a sense of fair play.
The NC Senate map is subtle in its stacking of the deck, giving the Rs 24 safe seats and the Ds 17, leaving nine up for grabs. It keeps Greensboro relatively whole for Sen. Gladys Robinson (D), ceding the rest of Guilford County to Sen. Michael Garrett (D) and a couple of Republicans who took office after one longtime incumbent stepped down and another got embroiled in a sex scandal. It splits Forsyth County, and Winston-Salem, in two.
The Congressional map is the most egregious abuse of power the NC GOP has enacted yet, a sinister gerrymander that’s part of a national political coup designed to reinforce minority rule in the United States.
Of NC’s 14 Congressional districts, eight of them are now safely Republican, an insurmountable majority that could tip as far as 11-3 after the 2022 elections if things go the Republicans’ way in this off-year election.
It’s disgraceful. It’s shameful. It’s corrupt. And it’s un-American.
Let’s look at the math: There are 7,166,999 voters in the state as of this week — 2.49 million Democrats, 2.45 million unaffiliated and 2.18 million Republicans. So registered Republicans make up less than 31 percent of the electorate, yet they will control almost 80 percent of Congressional representation. The map packs Winston-Salem into a rural district that drops as far south as Lincoln County. It cracks Greensboro into three districts, all of which may end up being represented by Republicans even though the city and county are solidly blue. One of these Greensboro districts, the one where current Rep. Kathy Manning (D) lives, also contains parts of Boone, the section where Rep. Virginia Foxx (R) lives.
This bill passed earlier this month in its third reading with aye votes from every single House Republican.
This willingness to abuse power, to instill the rule of the minority over the majority, to subvert the will of the people of the state of North Carolina shows an astonishing lack of character, even for elected officials.
There’s a word for people of low character, whose words can’t be trusted and whose motives are kept to themselves. They’re scumbags. And they’re running the show.
Join the First Amendment Society, a membership that goes directly to funding TCB‘s newsroom.
We believe that reporting can save the world.
The TCB First Amendment Society recognizes the vital role of a free, unfettered press with a bundling of local experiences designed to build community, and unique engagements with our newsroom that will help you understand, and shape, local journalism’s critical role in uplifting the people in our cities.
All revenue goes directly into the newsroom as reporters’ salaries and freelance commissions.