GOP vows to fight ruling on House districts in NC

North Carolina Gov. Roy Cooper blasts 'technologically diabolical gerrymandering' in his home state

An appeal would go directly to the U.S. Supreme Court.

In the 2-1 ruling on Pennsylvania's case, a judge found that the U.S. Supreme Court has rejected the idea that district maps should be blind to party considerations. Johnson, a lecturer in journalism, is available to speak with media about the decision, election law, gerrymandering, possible appeals to the case, similar cases before the Supreme Court and related issues.

"Rather than seeking to advance any democratic or constitutional interest, the state legislator responsible for drawing the 2016 plan said he drew the map to advantage Republican candidates because he 'think [s] electing Republicans is better than electing Democrats, '" said Judge James Wynn, who wrote the order handed down earlier this week.

"In election cases often times when you're dealing with an impending deadline you try to keep the status quo", said Rebecca Green, a law professor who leads the election law program at William & Mary Law School. Johnson participated in the 2012 Kansas redistricting litigation as counsel for the Overland Park Chamber of Commerce.

U.S. Presidential election electoral map.

"We obviously disagree with the ruling", House Speaker Tim Moore of Cleveland County told reporters, "and will take it up to the highest court available".

All three judges agreed partisan motives behind the districting plan violated the Constitution's equal protection provision because it took the power to elect representatives away from the people. Before legislators even gathered to talk about the congressional districts, and before the public was allowed to have its say, the maps were a done deal.

"The authors of the [now-overturned] North Carolina plan gleefully boasted of their partisan motives, achieved some of the worst partisan asymmetries of the last half-century, and ensured that their handiwork would be immune to all but the biggest wave-all in a state whose political geography, according to the computer simulations, mildly favors Democrats", Stephanopoulos said.

This latest lawsuit against the districts was filed by Democrats and election advocacy groups.

State Republican Party executive director Dallas Woodhouse said the districts "are fair and were drawn following all known rules, and existing case law". North Carolina, a lawsuit over racial gerrymandering in legislative districts. This press release reflects the GOP fear that the state Supreme Court, which has a Democratic majority, will see this differently than Republican Commonwealth Court Judge Brobson did.

But the process of court approval for any new maps is not scheduled to be finished until after the filing period is scheduled to start. They believe that Republican legislators went beyond what was outlined when following criteria created to maintain their 10 to 3 majority in the state.

Moreover, there's no guarantee that Judge Wynn's decision will be the last word.

"There's all sorts of evidence, mostly from statements of people who were involved in drawing these lines, that what they meant to do was draw the lines so Republicans would win more seats than they would otherwise win", Johnson said.

"First, that there was intent to gerrymander, that the legislature, in drawing the lines, meant to keep one political party in power nearly without regard to what the popular vote is". They also appointed a "special master" to draw a second map at the same time.

"The structural change plaintiffs seek must come from the political process itself, not the courts", concluded D. Brooks Smith, chief judge of the Third Circuit. "Gerrymandering, of course, is the quintessential political malfunction".

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