News

Federal three-judge panel throws out Congressional Districts 1 and 12 as racial gerrymanders

A federal three-judge panel threw out North Carolina’s Congressional Districts 1 and 12 as racial gerrymanders today and gave the General Assembly until February 19 to redraw new maps.

Writing for the court in a decision handed down late this afternoon, Circuit Judge Roger L. Gregory said:

After careful consideration of all evidence presented during a three-day bench trial, the parties’ findings of fact and conclusions of law, the parties’ arguments, and the applicable law, the Court finds that the plaintiffs have shown that race predominated in both CD 1 and CD 12 and that the defendants have failed to establish that its race-based redistricting satisfies strict scrutiny. Accordingly, the Court holds that the general assembly’s 2011 Congressional Redistricting Plan is unconstitutional as violative of the Equal Protection Clause of the Fourteenth Amendment. Having found that the 2011 Congressional Redistricting Plan violates the Equal Protection Clause, the Court will require that new congressional districts be drawn forthwith to remedy the unconstitutional districts.

U.S. District Judge Max O. Cogburn, Jr. agreed with Gregory, while Judge William L. Osteen, Jr. dissented in part.

The court’s decision conflicts with decisions by the state Supreme Court in Dickson v. Rucho, which has twice upheld the 2011 legislative and congressional maps — most recently after a remand for further review by the U.S. Supreme Court.  (For more on how the redistricting battles are playing out here and elsewhere, read here.)

And its order requiring a do-over by Feb. 19 disrupts the current election calendar heading into the March 15 primary elections.

Read the decision here.

 

2 Comments


  1. Anne-Marie Mazur

    February 6, 2016 at 9:46 am

    What about districts 4 and 13?

  2. mww

    February 8, 2016 at 9:43 am

    I’m not an attorney, but it seems that if the mapmakers violated the constitution, Equal Protection Clause of the Fourteenth Amendment, they have violated federal law. Where is our Attorney General (wantabe Gov) in pushing for filing federal charges against the mapmakers..Maybe some jail time?

Check Also

State Supreme Court rules retroactive application of teacher tenure repeal is unconstitutional

The state Supreme Court ruled unanimously today that ...

Top Stories from NCPW

  • News
  • Commentary

The U.S. House on Thursday voted to hike the federal minimum wage to $15 per hour by 2025.  The meas [...]

Gov. Roy Cooper signed the controversial “Death by Distribution” bill into law last week. Under the [...]

Van der Vaart: supporter of Trump, critic of regulation, was in charge during some of the state [...]

North Carolina voting rights groups and Democrats were compared to the legendary Pied Piper at the s [...]

The post …the Ventriloquist appeared first on NC Policy Watch. [...]

Linger long enough in Raleigh’s legislative lagoon and you’ll find there are three kinds of lawmaker [...]

There’s an old adage in the law that’s often used to describe situations in which a judge jails some [...]

The right-wing wallflowers of The Wall Street Journal reported Sunday, with an almost palpable sense [...]