Conservative Media Blasts ‘Skullduggery’ in NC Redistricting Battles
North Carolina continues to hold pride of place as Ground Zero in the national debate over partisan gerrymandering. And a conservative news site based in Charlotte is out with a provocative assessment of the latest developments in state and federal courts, where fresh but separate battles are churning along over both the congressional map and state legislative boundaries.
"The Left's latest skullduggery could have a devastating impact on public confidence in an electoral system already fraught with partisan bickering and scandal, according to state GOP leaders," Liberty Headlines reports. And if Democratic judges "manipulate the State Constitution to expand their party's power in the legislative branch, we are looking at a full-blown constitutional crisis," it quoted state Sen. Ralph Hise, chairman of his chamber's Redistricting and Elections Committee, as asserting. "That's the end of the rule of law."
Common Cause is the lead plaintiff in a suit seeking to compel another redrawing of state House and state Senate maps, after an earlier lawsuit by the advocacy group resulted in maps that helped Democrats score significant, but not takeover, gains in Raleigh in the midterm election. The group got a boost when voters elected a new state Supreme Court justice, Anita Earls, who was once a litigator arguing for a redistricting overhaul in the state.
Sign up for The Fulcrum newsletter
Common Cause is also lead plaintiff in another case, to be argued before the Supreme Court in coming months, arguing that North Carolina's map of 13 House districts is an unconstitutionally partisan gerrymander. (With one race still in limbo because of suspected election fraud, the delegation has just three Democrats again this year even though the party garnered 48 percent of the statewide vote in House races last fall.)
"Even assuming liberal Justice Ruth Bader Ginsburg is healthy and present for the decision, the swapping of chronic swing-voter Anthony Kennedy for the (presumably) more conservative Brett Kavanaugh likely shifts the high court to the right," Liberty Headlines concludes. "Kennedy had sided with the court's liberal wing in previous redistricting cases.