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(720 posts)
Wed Oct 11, 2017, 11:37 AM Oct 2017

"An Even More Insidious Kind of Gerrymandering"

As a native of North Carolina, I was thrilled when the state went for President Obama in 2008, and thought that was the beginning of a gradual liberal shift in the state. Unfortunately, the state has gone back towards Republicans since 2008, and it isn't clear to me why. But that aside, North Carolina republicans haven't been shy about what, to me, represents abuses of their power. This judicial gerrymandering idea is particularly troubling.

North Carolina Republicans are not having much luck in court. Already this year, the U.S. Supreme Court has struck down state legislative districts and federal congressional districts drawn by the North Carolina GOP as unconstitutional racial gerrymanders. State courts have also blocked key portions of Republicans’ legislative power-grab, including an election board overhaul that would’ve prevented Democratic Gov. Roy Cooper from restoring voting rights throughout the state. A federal court had previously invalidated a different disenfranchisement bill, writing that Republican state legislators had “target[ed] African Americans with almost surgical precision.”

The state GOP has not modified its strategy in response to these rulings. Instead, it’s trying to modify the courts. North Carolina’s Republican-dominated General Assembly is currently poised to pass a gerrymandering bill that would carve up state judicial districts to create more seats for GOP judges and fewer seats for Democratic ones. The measure would not merely politicize the courts. It would transform them into another political branch designed to do the bidding of legislative Republicans. If the assembly’s gambit succeeds, North Carolina’s judiciary may permanently lose its independence.

More at the link - [link:http://www.slate.com/articles/news_and_politics/jurisprudence/2017/10/judicial_gerrymandering_is_coming_to_north_carolina.html|
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