The big news in North Carolina last week was the announcement that our new state Supreme Court, which in November 2022 shifted to majority Republican, will re-adjudicate two decisions the former court made that were unfavorable to GOP dogma.
The court will rehear arguments about our state Senate districts, which were ruled illegal gerrymanders by the court in December 2022, just before everything switched over, and it will redecide the legality of voter ID, which was also settled in December, struck down because it was found to be a tool that disenfranchises Black voters.
Don’t let anyone tell you different: This does not happen all the time; it is not business as usual; it is neither good government nor good jurisprudence. Nothing has changed since the last decisions were rendered, except for the makeup of the court.
It’s a huge waste of money, but more significantly, it is a waste of time, which is the primary strategy in the GOP playbook.
One hallmark of progress means setting right the wrongs of the past so that we can move forward. But we cannot move forward if we keep re-litigating everything until it turns out the way the Republicans want it to. It’s not how the law is supposed to work, not how the courts are supposed to work, not how government is supposed to work. Game this policy out, and soon we will be writing a new state Constitution every time there’s a power shift in the NC Legislature. But these measures are designed to make sure there is never a change in the power structure.
This is what minority rule looks like.
Back in November, when the new court was elected, we opted to give them the benefit of the doubt until they started their terms.
We wrote: “The GOP takeover of the NC Supreme Court is big news only if the court begins to act in as partisan a fashion as the US Supreme Court has since the conservatives took over — specifically the ones who lied to Congress to get their jobs, or the one whose spouse helped plan the Jan. 6 Insurrection.”
Looks like it didn’t take long.
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