The Latest: Judges uphold changes to state legislative maps
RALEIGH, N.C. (AP) — The Latest on redistricting rulings from a panel of North Carolina judges. (all times local):
North Carolina state judges who rejected state legislative district maps over what they called GOP-slanted bias have upheld all the remapping that they ordered Republicans to perform. They rejected an appeal from groups that weren’t satisfied with the changes.
A three-judge panel declined Monday to agree to the demands of Common Cause, the state Democratic Party and Democratic voters for a third-party expert to take over redrawing about 20 state House districts.
The decision means that barring an appeal the nearly 80 legislative districts the judges told lawmakers last month to redraw will be used in the 2020 elections.
The Democrats and Common Cause successfully sued Republicans in their partisan gerrymandering lawsuit, prompting the remapping. But the judges disagreed with the plaintiffs’ complaints that the judges’ redrawing recipe wasn’t followed.
North Carolina judges have blocked the state’s current congressional map from being used in the 2020 elections. They sided with Democratic and unaffiliated voters who say there’s plenty of evidence showing Republicans drew the districts chiefly to maximize their seat total.
The state judges issued a preliminary injunction Monday preventing elections under the district lines, starting with the March primary.
The judges halted the use of these districts less than two months after they struck down state House and Senate districts. There they found extreme political manipulation of the lines similar to what voters suing over the congressional map also say occurred.