NC Supreme Court says no to legislative map review; lawmakers enact new Congressional map

Lawmakers enacted a new Congressional map Friday for the 2020 elections. It will likely be subject to court review as part of ongoing litigation.

The North Carolina Supreme Court declined to take up an appeal of several districts in a state legislative map that was redrawn after a court found it had been initially gerrymandered for partisan gain.

The plaintiffs in Common Cause v. Lewis asked the state’s high court to review their appeal ahead of the Court of Appeals in an effort to expedite matters ahead of the Dec. 2 candidate filing deadline. They objected specifically to five county groupings in the House map after the lower court approved it.

The order from the Supreme Court did not explain why the justices declined to take up the appeal, and it denied another motion from the legislative defendants to recuse Justice Anita Earls as moot.

The plaintiffs can still appeal the maps to the state Court of Appeals.

In the meantime, legislators have enacted a different set of maps stemming from a separate partisan gerrymandering case, Harper v. Lewis, which challenges the 2016 Congressional districts.

The House passed the map drawn mostly by Sen. Paul Newton (R-Cabarrus) Thursday and the Senate passed it Friday. Democrats’ claim the map is still gerrymandered, and the public raised concerns about the redistricting process.

The map will likely be subject to court review as part of the ongoing Harper litigation.


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