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North Carolina map
In the wake of the legislative elections of 2010, two things seemed pretty clear about redistricting: that Illinois was going to be our best state for redistricting, in that it was a previous Republican gerrymander of a large state where now the Dems controlled the trifecta, and that North Carolina was going to be our worst state, in that it was a previous Democratic gerrymander of a large state with the Republicans now in control -- although the Democrats still control the governorship in North Carolina, it's an unusual state in that she has no veto power over the redistricting process. (In fact, we've been asking on Twitter for suggestions on what to call North Carolina, as a mirror to our coinage of "Redistmas" for the huge gift that Illinois provided us. "Redoomsday," "Redistpocalypse," "Redistaster," and "RD-Day" are all witty and appropriate suggestions we've received.)

Well, that day of reckoning has arrived, and, as expected, local Republicans made the most of their opportunities, with a map that will provide GOP gains in the two to four-seat range, probably at the higher end of that range. Most of the Democrats in swing seats in North Carolina managed to survive 2010, but the 2012 map makes their paths much harder; there really aren't swing seats anymore, as Brad Miller, Mike McIntyre, Heath Shuler, and Larry Kissell all find themselves in districts that went for John McCain with at least 55% of the vote (which, ballparking it, would mean a PVI of around R+8 or worse). In other words: there are three Dem seats that are all 70% Obama or better, and 10 GOP seats that are all 55% McCain or worse.

This was accomplished by maximally packing Democratic areas into three safely Democratic seats: the two VRA seats of NC-01 (G.K. Butterfield, in the rural eastern lowlands) and NC-12 (Mel Watt, reaching wormlike from Charlotte to Greensboro), and another seat (David Price's NC-04) that puts every Democrat in the Research Triangle area into one district -- instead of spread out among three districts (also NC-02 and NC-13) like before. In fact, the 4th reaches down to grab Fayetteville for good measure, creating a strangely Italy-shaped district. This Dem-packing also serves to save freshman GOPer Renee Elmers in NC-02, the only Republican who would have been vulnerable under the existing map, by giving her turf in the Raleigh area to Butterfield and Price.

The two Dems who seem likeliest to get their walking papers right away are Miller, who sees his Dem-leaning district turned dark red by having the African-American part of Greensboro given to the 12th. Kissell is the other one; he used to have a light-red district with an arm reaching straight into Charlotte but now doesn't even have one iota of Mecklenburg County, leaving him just exurbs and rural counties. [UPDATE: Oops, an eagle-eyed spotter points out it does go into Mecklenburg; it looks like it's hidden behind that "12" in the image.]

Shuler and McIntyre, hardcore Blue Dogs both, were good matches for their more conservative districts, but they find their districts made even more conservative, with McIntyre's NC-07 being divested of not just Fayetteville but also part of his Dem-friendly home turf of Robeson County (although his house apparently stays in the 7th), and with Shuler's NC-11 losing much of the college town of Asheville, the lone island of blue in his otherwise red district. Shuler, in fact, gets the most conservative seat of any of the 13, at 58% McCain. Even if McIntyre or Shuler were able to survive the 2012 elections, I can't see holding onto these seats if they become open later -- and the 11th may become open sooner rather than later, if rumors about Shuler moving to take the Athletic Director position at Univ. of Tennessee are any indication. (In fact, with Dan Boren hitting the trail and Jim Matheson eyeing a statewide bit, I'm wondering if the number of real core Blue Dogs will be down to single digits in the next House.)

The Rothenburg Report has names of some potential Republicans we might see running in these new seats:

• NC-07: '10 loser Ilario Pantano (already running again)
• NC-08: state Rep. Jerry Dockham
• NC-11: Hendersonville DA Jeff Hunt
• NC-13: former US Att'y George Holding, Wake Co. Commissioner Paul Noble, weirdo Vernon Robinson

Local political expert John Davis is also out with a thorough analysis of the changes to each seat.

UPDATE (David): Via a group called the North Carolina FreeEnterprise Foundation, we have McCain numbers (PDF) for the old and new districts (hat-tip: Aaron Blake):

Nuts to that. We have far, far better information available, thanks to a great link by user twohundertseventy. I've compiled all of NC's spreadsheets into a single file (click here) — there's tons of data for each district. I've also pulled out the new Kerry and Obama numbers, as well as the old ones. Check it out:

CD Incumbent Party Obama
Old
McCain
Old
Obama
New
McCain
New
Kerry
Old
Bush
Old
Kerry
New
Bush
New
NC-01 Butterfield (D) 62 37 68 31 57 42 61 39
NC-02 Ellmers (R) 52 47 44 56 46 54 36 64
NC-03 Jones (R) 38 61 43 56 32 68 39 61
NC-04 Price (D) 63 36 71 28 55 44 61 39
NC-05 Foxx (R) 38 61 42 57 33 66 34 65
NC-06 Coble (R) 36 63 44 55 30 69 37 63
NC-07 McIntyre (D) 47 52 44 55 44 56 40 59
NC-08 Kissell (D) 53 47 44 55 45 54 38 62
NC-09 Myrick (R) 45 55 44 55 36 63 35 65
NC-10 McHenry (R) 36 63 42 57 33 67 36 64
NC-11 Shuler (D) 47 52 41 58 43 57 36 64
NC-12 Watt (D) 70 29 78 22 63 37 69 31
NC-13 Miller (D) 59 40 43 56 52 47 36 63


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Originally posted to Daily Kos Elections on Fri Jul 01, 2011 at 11:39 AM PDT.

Also republished by DKos Asheville and Daily Kos.

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Comment Preferences

  •  NC-08 does still have an arm into Mecklenburg (8+ / 0-)

    http://www.ncga.state.nc.us/...

    I'm not convinced this district is unwinnable for Kissell, he pretty much broke even in the non-Mecklenburg areas of his district in 2010, which is mostly maintained, and while he's getting some Republican-friendly territory to his north, he's also getting a good chunk of Robeson.

    •  Numbers (2+ / 0-)
      Recommended by:
      MichaelNY, KingofSpades

      The performance for Cabarrus, Stanly, Union, Montgomery, Anson, Richmond, Scotland, and Hoke counties for 2010, which are still part of NC-08 with the lines about the same:

      Kissell - 55,062
      Johnson - 53,826

      He's still getting a tendril in to Mecklenburg, but not quite as much.  Kissell won his section of Mecklenburg by 10,700 votes in 2010, and I bet there's still enough of Mecklenburg to give Kissell a 5,000 vote margin at least in terms of 2010 turnout.

      He picks up a lot of Robeson, where McIntyre destroyed Pantano.  Probably another 5,000 vote margin for Kissell in terms of 2010 turnout.

      So the question is, does the number of Republican voters added from Rowan, Davidson, and Randolph counties make this unwinnable for Kissell?

      Someone would have to convince me it's worse than a toss-up.

    •  I think Kissell should give it a go. (1+ / 0-)
      Recommended by:
      MichaelNY

      And give it his all.  It would have been more prudent to pack together McIntyre and Kissell together, leaving them surrounded by red seats, but this gives them both an opportunity to hang on.

      Ad hoc, ad loc and quid pro quo! So little time, so much to know!

      by KingofSpades on Fri Jul 01, 2011 at 07:16:49 PM PDT

      [ Parent ]

  •  Miller's two best chances, perhaps (2+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:
    gabjoh, surfbird007

    1. Stay in his district; hope that a nutter like Robinson gets the nomination.
    2. Hope that David Price, who'll be 72 come next election, considers the broad spectrum of options available to him in life and chooses another one.

  •  so (3+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:
    Xenocrypt, MichaelNY, KingofSpades

    didn't a similar version of NC12 get struck down in the 1990s?

    so they managed to create lots of 55% McCain districts. So it'd be a shame if the election resulted in a 55/45 Obama NC where those 55% R districts turn into 50/50 districts..

    so they might be doing the 1990s Georgia job of redistricting here.

    Sometimes I think the majority-minority requirements are not very helpful overall. But you know, no advances in voter attitudes have occurred since the 1990s. So you know.

    I'm sure there's a few thousand NC Republican quotes wanting fairness and hating on gerrymandering, and probably a few more hating on majority-minority districts. But then again, VRA districts are their creation for obvious purposes.

    The Republican Party isn't a party of small government, it's a party of a government for the few. @bhindepmo

    by RBH on Fri Jul 01, 2011 at 11:53:09 AM PDT

    •  The likely answer (1+ / 0-)
      Recommended by:
      MichaelNY

      is that it will be struck down if the Republicans attempt to defend it on the basis of race, but sustained if they characterize it as having political motivations.

      Ok, so I read the polls.

      by andgarden on Fri Jul 01, 2011 at 11:59:36 AM PDT

      [ Parent ]

      •  gotta admit that (1+ / 0-)
        Recommended by:
        MichaelNY

        it didn't take long for them to just go with the "pair African-Americans with liberal whites instead of moderate whites" method. Which is why NC4 is the 3rd most African-American in the state, despite the state being 21% African-American and all.

        But both NC1 and NC12 are majority-African American in overall population

        The Republican Party isn't a party of small government, it's a party of a government for the few. @bhindepmo

        by RBH on Fri Jul 01, 2011 at 12:06:46 PM PDT

        [ Parent ]

        •  Which doesn't matter. VRA looks at voting age (1+ / 0-)
          Recommended by:
          MichaelNY

          population.

        •  Racial composition aside… (0+ / 0-)

          …I find any district that is not square, circular, or otherwise compact in shape, with no regard for natural barriers, geography, or local governing entities, that cuts through existing city, town, county, or zip code borders to be mighty offensive.

          It's one thing if Charlotte were big enough to support three districts, but carving it three ways should be offensive to voters of both parties.

          Teh stoopidTM, it hurts. Buy smart, union-printed, USA-made, signs, stickers, swag for everyone: DemSign.com.

          by DemSign on Mon Jul 04, 2011 at 10:44:16 AM PDT

          [ Parent ]

    •  Again, I think you have to look at (1+ / 0-)
      Recommended by:
      MichaelNY

      Majority-minority requirements in two ways:

      1) For partisan effect, you have to look at them across the country.  And even here, if it wasn't for the VRA, this could maybe have been an even-worse map.  And also, there'd likely be (often at least solidly-voting, and some even better) Democrats gone in South Carolina, Alabama, Georgia, Florida, Texas, Mississippi, and maybe some of Wisconsin, Ohio, Michigan, Missouri even Pennsylvania...at least this cycle.  This cycle, I don't know which states where a non-VRA system would help the Democrats--a hypothetical unified New York redistricting?  A hypothetical partisan California redistricting?  In other cycles, more neutral redistricting cycles, maybe things would be different, but as I said in the DD I think you need a real national analysis to answer the question.

      2) As other people have pointed out, the point of the VRA is to ensure representation to regionally-concentrated ethnic minorities, and partisan effects have to be weighed explicitly against that consideration (even if you don't think that's a valid goal, again, it should be stated explicitly IMHO, to avoid conflating the two considerations).

      25, Dem, Dude seeing a dude, CT-04(originally), PA-02/NY-12(now)

      by Xenocrypt on Fri Jul 01, 2011 at 12:31:14 PM PDT

      [ Parent ]

      •  I'm pretty sure Gwen Moore's seat (2+ / 0-)
        Recommended by:
        Xenocrypt, MichaelNY

        Isn't VRA protected. It is, however, protected by the fact that any attempt to crack Milwaukee would probably be a massive dummymander.

        •  Thanks...I wasn't (1+ / 0-)
          Recommended by:
          MichaelNY

          Super-sure about some of those states, which is why I put them separately.  You're right that in some cases, a hostile legislature's interest is in packing, not cracking--but then the VRA is either irrelevant or helpful, not harmful.

          I would still like to see a national analysis of its effects.  Or rather, I'm sure there has already been one--hopefully someone will link me if so.

          25, Dem, Dude seeing a dude, CT-04(originally), PA-02/NY-12(now)

          by Xenocrypt on Sat Jul 02, 2011 at 10:00:19 AM PDT

          [ Parent ]

  •  Once again: (5+ / 0-)

    Hagan/Dole  Perdue/McCrory
    1 70-29 71-27
    2 46-51 45-52
    3 47-51 54-44
    4 70-27 66-30
    5 46-51 44-53
    6 48-48 45-52  Dole won by .4
    7 50-46 51-45
    8 48-48 45-53 Hagan won by .2
    9 45-51 31-67
    10 47-49 41-56
    11 45-51 45-51
    12 78-20 73-25
    13 47-50 45-41

  •  Veto? (0+ / 0-)

    will Perdue veto that? If she does they might have some trouble overriding that

    Upper Houses: http://i1230.photobucket.com/...

    Lower Houses: http://i1230.photobucket.com/...

    19-M, Fierce Democrat; Borderline socialist. MD-8 (Home), MD-5 (School)

    by JZTess on Fri Jul 01, 2011 at 11:55:02 AM PDT

  •  2nd par., shouldn't it be Miller, not Price? nt (1+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:
    David Jarman
  •  NC Constitutional Offices (2+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:
    James Allen, MichaelNY

    Might Kissell/Miller/Shuler attempt for statewide office next year instead?  NC has a lot of statewide elected positions, two of which (Labor and Ag Commissioner) are held by GOPers.

    NY-12 resident, lives across the street from NY-14

    by Bobby Big Wheel on Fri Jul 01, 2011 at 12:00:25 PM PDT

  •  Karma (6+ / 0-)

    - Democrats didn't want a GOP gov to have veto power over their map
    - Democrats rejected a Republican proposal for an independent redistricting commission two years ago
    - Brad Miller drew the 13th district for himself to run in 10 years ago

    Karma!

  •  Remember when (6+ / 0-)

    They were (by report?  Actual statement?) all about how disgusting NC-12 is, and how they were certainly going to make a compact Charlotte-based district as opposed to that oft-mocked monstrosity?  Ah, good times.

    25, Dem, Dude seeing a dude, CT-04(originally), PA-02/NY-12(now)

    by Xenocrypt on Fri Jul 01, 2011 at 12:09:39 PM PDT

  •  I bet Miller wishes (1+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:
    MichaelNY

    He would have shot for the senate when we could have used him.  Sat in the back long enough he is finally going to just disappear.  

  •  NC-12 (8+ / 0-)

    Another decade another trip to the Supreme Court for NC maps..

    Once again, the Supreme Court has ruled three times that NC-12 in such a configuration is not a VRA-protected district. We could only hope that the (lying) Republicans describe it that way, since it'd make it virtually inevitable that the courts would strike down the map. The odds strike me as quite high that the maps will be rejected in any event.

    More immediately, the NC-01 district pulls out of several Section 5 counties, with several African American communities now placed in heavily GOP districts, so the path toward denial of DOJ preclearance seems readily evident as well.

    •  You were pretty confident that they (1+ / 0-)
      Recommended by:
      MichaelNY

      would compact NC-12.

      Seems like the reality of having power made them go in a different direction. Their prerogative.

      Here's a question: what happens if the liberals on the Supreme Court see it as an unconstitutional political gerrymander, and attempt to reverse it on that ground? Several of the conservatives on the court are on record as saying that an almost identical district is a racial gerrymander.

      Ok, so I read the polls.

      by andgarden on Fri Jul 01, 2011 at 01:05:05 PM PDT

      [ Parent ]

    •  They don't describe it that way. (1+ / 0-)
      Recommended by:
      MichaelNY

      They say it's a drawn as a strong Democratic seat.

      •  Where? (0+ / 0-)

        Ok, so I read the polls.

        by andgarden on Fri Jul 01, 2011 at 01:11:01 PM PDT

        [ Parent ]

        •  In Bob Rucho's statement (3+ / 0-)
          Recommended by:
          roguemapper, andgarden, MichaelNY

          defending the neutrality and wonderful fairness of the map.
          http://www.ncga.state.nc.us/...

          •  I see (2+ / 0-)
            Recommended by:
            Xenocrypt, MichaelNY

            Well, they've said essentially the right things. They cast the 12th as a designer district for Mel Watt.

            Can they get away with that? Maybe. It worked for the Democrats in 2000, as their citation shows. They neglect to point out that they were on the opposite side of the argument last time!

            That whole letter is too cute for words.

            Ok, so I read the polls.

            by andgarden on Fri Jul 01, 2011 at 01:26:53 PM PDT

            [ Parent ]

            •  How do you like this: (5+ / 0-)
              in twelve of our proposed thirteen districts, in the 2008 General Election, more voters voted for Democratic candidate for Attorney General, Roy Cooper than those who voted for the Republican candidate[.]

              Ok, so I read the polls.

              by andgarden on Fri Jul 01, 2011 at 01:28:21 PM PDT

              [ Parent ]

              •  That's terrible (9+ / 0-)

                They drew a 12D - 1R map, then! How is that fair to Republicans?

                Political Director, Daily Kos

                by David Nir on Fri Jul 01, 2011 at 01:51:22 PM PDT

                [ Parent ]

                •  I'd love to have a confidential chat (2+ / 0-)
                  Recommended by:
                  MichaelNY, KingofSpades

                  with the lawyer who drafted that thing. roguemapper already picked up on an implicit admission about racial motivation for the 12th. Oops.

                  Ok, so I read the polls.

                  by andgarden on Fri Jul 01, 2011 at 01:55:45 PM PDT

                  [ Parent ]

                  •  Which statement was that? (eom) (0+ / 0-)

                    Political Director, Daily Kos

                    by David Nir on Fri Jul 01, 2011 at 01:58:10 PM PDT

                    [ Parent ]

                    •  Basically, this: (5+ / 0-)
                      Voters in the First and Twelfth Congressional Districts are represented by two African American members of Congress, Congressman G.K. Butterfield and Congressman Mel Watt. As part of our investigation into fair and legal congressional districts, we sought advice from Congressman Butterfield and Congressman Watt. We believed that we could benefit from hearing their views on how their districts should be re-drawn in light of population movement.

                      The natural question is: why only consult with the black members of the delegation? roguemapper thinks what it adds up to is "that racial considerations were essential in their configuration of NC-12[.]" I think that is a very plausible inference.

                      Ok, so I read the polls.

                      by andgarden on Fri Jul 01, 2011 at 02:02:18 PM PDT

                      [ Parent ]

                      •  Ah (1+ / 0-)
                        Recommended by:
                        MichaelNY

                        Yeah, that's a great catch.

                        Political Director, Daily Kos

                        by David Nir on Fri Jul 01, 2011 at 02:03:36 PM PDT

                        [ Parent ]

                        •  Enough to get to discovery, I would think (1+ / 0-)
                          Recommended by:
                          MichaelNY

                          Ok, so I read the polls.

                          by andgarden on Fri Jul 01, 2011 at 02:04:55 PM PDT

                          [ Parent ]

                          •  I'm not too familiar (1+ / 0-)
                            Recommended by:
                            MichaelNY

                            With how discovery works in VRA cases - or rather, I don't really know how motions to dismiss work in VRA cases. But as long as you survive an MTD, you should be able to get to discovery. And given NC's fraught history with redistricting, I'd be surprised if the Republicans could win an MTD.

                            Political Director, Daily Kos

                            by David Nir on Fri Jul 01, 2011 at 02:06:39 PM PDT

                            [ Parent ]

                          •  Well yes, that's what I mean. I don't think (1+ / 0-)
                            Recommended by:
                            MichaelNY

                            the Republicans can 12(b)(6) this one under Iqbal. So far as I know, the motions are just standard under the Federal Rules. But it would be interesting to look back at the record for past litigation and see.

                            The more interesting question is whether that statement would be enough to survive summary judgement. Patrick McHenry running his mouth probably didn't help on that score.  

                            Ok, so I read the polls.

                            by andgarden on Fri Jul 01, 2011 at 02:11:21 PM PDT

                            [ Parent ]

                          •  By the time SJs roll around (1+ / 0-)
                            Recommended by:
                            andgarden

                            They would hopefully have a lot more than that one statement.

                            Political Director, Daily Kos

                            by David Nir on Fri Jul 01, 2011 at 03:41:21 PM PDT

                            [ Parent ]

                          •  Here's an interesting question: (1+ / 0-)
                            Recommended by:
                            MichaelNY

                            what should Roy Cooper do when NC gets sued over this?

                            Ok, so I read the polls.

                            by andgarden on Fri Jul 01, 2011 at 04:51:47 PM PDT

                            [ Parent ]

                          •  Good q (1+ / 0-)
                            Recommended by:
                            MichaelNY

                            Either make it very, very clear that he's simply doing his statutory duty defending the state, or hire an outside firm to handle this. Latter is "safer," but it costs real money and I think opens you up to more criticism. Former can make you look like you're "opposing" minority voter interests, but the right allies can probably make the right statements on your behalf.

                            Political Director, Daily Kos

                            by David Nir on Sun Jul 03, 2011 at 02:56:41 PM PDT

                            [ Parent ]

                          •  Honestly, I was thinking that he should (0+ / 0-)

                            confess error and try to settle.

                            Ok, so I read the polls.

                            by andgarden on Sun Jul 03, 2011 at 03:02:30 PM PDT

                            [ Parent ]

                          •  Hahahah (0+ / 0-)

                            I don't think he gets to make that call. :)

                            Political Director, Daily Kos

                            by David Nir on Mon Jul 04, 2011 at 01:43:29 PM PDT

                            [ Parent ]

                          •  To be perfectly serious, why not? (0+ / 0-)

                            He's elected to his office in his own right. He's not the mouthpiece of the legislature. As Jerry Brown said last year "Attorneys general are not potted plants in the litigation process[.]"

                            Ok, so I read the polls.

                            by andgarden on Mon Jul 04, 2011 at 02:15:33 PM PDT

                            [ Parent ]

                          •  That was w/r/t an appeal (1+ / 0-)
                            Recommended by:
                            MichaelNY

                            AGs are obligated to defend the state. If they truly think they cannot, then they can hire an outside firm. There aren't any other options.

                            Political Director, Daily Kos

                            by David Nir on Tue Jul 05, 2011 at 11:43:56 AM PDT

                            [ Parent ]

                          •  North Carolina Constitution (0+ / 0-)

                            Art. III § 7:

                            Sec. 7.  Other elective officers.
                            (1)        Officers.  A Secretary of State, an Auditor, a Treasurer, a Superintendent of Public Instruction, an Attorney General, a Commissioner of Agriculture, a Commissioner of Labor, and a Commissioner of Insurance shall be elected by the qualified voters of the State in 1972 and every four years thereafter, at the same time and places as members of the General Assembly are elected.  Their term of office shall be four years and shall commence on the first day of January next after their election and continue until their successors are elected and qualified.
                            (2)        Duties.  Their respective duties shall be prescribed by law.

                            The statutory duties I was able to find in a quick search are here. No doubt there's more.

                            I wonder what else you're referring to?

                            Ok, so I read the polls.

                            by andgarden on Tue Jul 05, 2011 at 12:26:58 PM PDT

                            [ Parent ]

                          •  This (1+ / 0-)
                            Recommended by:
                            MichaelNY

                            Link:

                            Attorneys with the N.C. Department of Justice provide legal representation and advice to all state government departments, agencies and commissions.

                            The AG is like a law firm for the state. Cooper wouldn't be the defendant - just the defense's attorney. I'm not sure who the "right" defendant would be, but I can't see it being Cooper.

                            Political Director, Daily Kos

                            by David Nir on Tue Jul 05, 2011 at 07:27:58 PM PDT

                            [ Parent ]

                          •  Other options are probably (0+ / 0-)

                            Elaine Marshall and Bev Perdue. Not a single possible named defendant would be a Republican, so far as I can tell.

                            There's got to be an advantage to that!

                            Ok, so I read the polls.

                            by andgarden on Wed Jul 06, 2011 at 04:02:02 AM PDT

                            [ Parent ]

                          •  I think no one's ever quite sure (1+ / 0-)
                            Recommended by:
                            andgarden

                            Whom to sue in these cases. In one of the Shaw cases, I think they tried suing the head of the DoJ's civil rights division!

                            Political Director, Daily Kos

                            by David Nir on Wed Jul 06, 2011 at 12:14:09 PM PDT

                            [ Parent ]

                          •  Ooh, that raises an interesting point (0+ / 0-)

                            If the DoJ refuses preclearance, can the legislature sue for declaratory judgement in the D.C. Circuit without the assent of the AG, Governor, or SoS? I don't think judicial review would be automatic.

                            Drag this out long enough, and it might well go to court!

                            Ok, so I read the polls.

                            by andgarden on Wed Jul 06, 2011 at 01:12:26 PM PDT

                            [ Parent ]

                          •  Good q (1+ / 0-)
                            Recommended by:
                            andgarden

                            Obviously that's one about standing. I think standing was litigated in Shaw as well... I'd look at the earliest cases in the line (incl. district court decisions).

                            Political Director, Daily Kos

                            by David Nir on Wed Jul 06, 2011 at 06:15:45 PM PDT

                            [ Parent ]

                          •  It might be a question of standing (0+ / 0-)

                            or it might be a question of North Carolina constitutional law: who may properly represent the state in Federal Court?

                            The VRA itself might address this question too.

                            Ok, so I read the polls.

                            by andgarden on Wed Jul 06, 2011 at 06:41:43 PM PDT

                            [ Parent ]

                      •  And this (5+ / 0-)
                        Because of the presence of Guilford County in the Twelfth District, we have drawn our proposed Twelfth District at a black voting age level that is above the percentage of black voting age population found in the current Twelfth District. We believe that this measure will ensure preclearance of the plan.

                        There is no rational reading of this other than that NC-12 was drawn with racial considerations in mind, and that said racial considerations are rationalized under Section 5.

                        The Supreme Court expressly rejected that rationale in Shaw v Reno and in Hunt v Cromartie. In my view, the above statement flies in the face of those rulings.

                        •  Whoever thought it would be a good idea (4+ / 0-)

                          To draft this letter should be shot. Or I mean, promoted! More letters like this, please!

                          My election law prof said, in regard to this exact topic: Don't write when you can speak, don't speak when you can nod, and don't nod if you don't have to. The idea of putting pen to paper is insane here, frankly - it's almost malpractice that some attorney suggested this. You never want to give the other side an opening like this, especially because you don't have to! All you say (again, quoting my prof) is: "This map is compliant with the Voting Rights Act." Period, end of story.

                          Political Director, Daily Kos

                          by David Nir on Fri Jul 01, 2011 at 03:44:01 PM PDT

                          [ Parent ]

                •  It's so egregious! (2+ / 0-)
                  Recommended by:
                  MichaelNY, James Allen

                  Same with Arkansas' map, Mike Beebe won all the districts, that is clear gerrymander against Republicans.

                  25, Male, CA-24, DK Elections Black Caucus Chair.

                  by DrPhillips on Fri Jul 01, 2011 at 01:56:23 PM PDT

                  [ Parent ]

            •  Well, Justice O'Connor is no longer around (1+ / 0-)
              Recommended by:
              MichaelNY

              to give them the benefit of the doubt on NC-12.

              Ad hoc, ad loc and quid pro quo! So little time, so much to know!

              by KingofSpades on Fri Jul 01, 2011 at 07:12:10 PM PDT

              [ Parent ]

          •  Interesting (4+ / 0-)

            So, they make it quite clear that racial considerations were essential in their configuration of NC-12, which strikes me as a direct violation of Shaw v Reno.

            They also invoke Section 5 with regard to Guilford County and the Supreme Court rulings of the '90s also explicitly stated that the I-85 configuration cannot be justified on Section 5 grounds.

            •  Your first sentence is one way (2+ / 0-)
              Recommended by:
              James Allen, MichaelNY

              to read it. In particular, I am thinking of the fact that they admit to consulting with--and only with--the black Congressmen. that seems like a mistake!

              It would have been better if they had said less about the 12. "We wanted a strong democratic district here" probably would have sufficed.

              Ok, so I read the polls.

              by andgarden on Fri Jul 01, 2011 at 01:39:11 PM PDT

              [ Parent ]

            •  What do you think of the new NC-01? (1+ / 0-)
              Recommended by:
              MichaelNY

              It pulls out of certain Section 5 counties, but it is designed for a more compact black district. It also allows Wake County to have an African American representing them. If it doesn't go into Wake County, it probably would not be majority VAP.

              Is it more important to be in Section 5 counties, or be majority VAP?

              •  See my post below (4+ / 0-)

                To quote the DOJ Section 5 Guidance:

                Alternatives to Retrogressive Plans

                There may be circumstances in which the jurisdiction asserts that, because of shifts in population or other significant changes since the last redistricting (e.g., residential segregation and demographic distribution of the population within the jurisdiction, the physical geography of the jurisdiction, the jurisdiction’s historical redistricting practices, political boundaries, such as cities or counties, and/or state redistricting requirements), retrogression is unavoidable. In those circumstances, the submitting jurisdiction seeking preclearance of such a plan bears the burden of demonstrating that a less-retrogressive plan cannot reasonably be drawn.

                In considering whether less-retrogressive alternative plans are available, the Department of Justice looks to plans that were actually considered or drawn by the submitting jurisdiction, as well as alternative plans presented or made known to the submitting jurisdiction by interested citizens or others. In addition, the Department may develop illustrative alternative plans for use in its analysis, taking into consideration the jurisdiction’s redistricting principles. If it is determined that a reasonable alternative plan exists that is non-retrogressive or less retrogressive than the submitted plan, the Attorney General will interpose an objection.

                In short, the fact that a non-retrogressive plan cannot be drawn to encompass all of said counties does not mean that a less-retrogressive plan cannot be drawn.

    •  Section 2 or 5 (1+ / 0-)
      Recommended by:
      MichaelNY

      What takes precedence? You can't keep it Section-2 VRA protected VAP majority black WITHOUT pulling out of Section 5 counties. You can't reach Raleigh otherwise and Durham alone only gets you to 49%.

      •  Yes, and no (3+ / 0-)
        Recommended by:
        andgarden, MichaelNY, KingofSpades

        You're obviously correct that you cannot make NC-01 majority-black without pulling out of some Section 5 counties, but it does not then follow that said counties must be placed in such heavily white districts. You can easily draw a less-retrogressive Sandhills based district to encompass the African-American communities in said counties.

        No one said it would be easy for the NC GOP to comply with the requirements of the VRA and pursue their partisan aims at the same time. It's clear enough to me from this statement that they realize they're skating on thin ice. I guess we'll find out soon enough how thin that ice proves to be.

      •  I was mistaken (3+ / 0-)
        Recommended by:
        andgarden, KingofSpades, MichaelNY

        It's quite simple to draw NC-01 as a majority-black district without pulling out of any Section 5 counties - surprisingly so. Just add the majority-black precincts in northern Nash County and cut through Granville County to add the majority-black core of Durham. That gives you a 50.1% VAP black district.

    •  Say, can you do a diary on this map? (1+ / 0-)
      Recommended by:
      MichaelNY

      and how it affects incumbents like Kissell and McIntyre and how it is probably illegal too?

      Ad hoc, ad loc and quid pro quo! So little time, so much to know!

      by KingofSpades on Fri Jul 01, 2011 at 07:14:29 PM PDT

      [ Parent ]

    •  I agree -- I don't see this map standing (1+ / 0-)
      Recommended by:
      MichaelNY

      I'm sure it won't be too different, but there's no way the 1st and the 12th stay like that.  My guess is that the 1st shifts back further east and releases any part of Wake County, whose voters go into the 2nd, and the the 12th shrinks back towards Charlotte, releasing A-A voter into Foxx and McHenry's districts.  

      If comments in the news media are admissible in court, the GOP's been blathering that the 12th is all about VRA compliance.  

      Miller's probably toast, which I suppose is only fair since it was a heavily gerrymandered district in the first place, but if there's any successful challenge to this map, that only makes Foxx, McHenry, Coble, or Myrick more vulnerable.  I'm sure we'll lose seats, but in the end I predict a 2-seat net loss after the dust settles (and a post-challenge map emerges).

  •  Pantano and Robinson in Congress (1+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:
    MichaelNY

    Blech, not that, please. Seriously, they're out there enough to lose seats to capable Democrats, so they may be the opponents we would like to have. Blue Dog Democrats could hold up in North Carolina better than anywhere else.

    25, Male, CA-24, DK Elections Black Caucus Chair.

    by DrPhillips on Fri Jul 01, 2011 at 01:30:25 PM PDT

  •  I coined RD-Day (0+ / 0-)

    But I think Redistocalyse takes the cake here.

    23, Solid Liberal Democrat, DKE Gay Caucus Majority Whip, IN-02 (home), IN-03 (birth), SC-03 (early childhood), IN-09 (college); Swingnut

    by HoosierD42 on Fri Jul 01, 2011 at 03:42:17 PM PDT

  •  NC-12: That settles it, the NC GOP are liars. (1+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:
    MichaelNY

    That is no better than the current NC-12.  Oh well.

    Ad hoc, ad loc and quid pro quo! So little time, so much to know!

    by KingofSpades on Fri Jul 01, 2011 at 07:08:32 PM PDT

  •  I think (2+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:
    MichaelNY, SaoMagnifico

    that this map is a 8-3-2, IMHO.  McIntyre can still win here.

    Ad hoc, ad loc and quid pro quo! So little time, so much to know!

    by KingofSpades on Fri Jul 01, 2011 at 07:22:52 PM PDT

  •  Question for Roguemapper and others on VRA (2+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:
    KingofSpades, MichaelNY

    court cases.

    If parts of the map get struck down in court then who decides what changes to make, the court itself or the state legislature again?  Also, if the court is the one who decides would they redraw the whole map or just the illegal sections?

  •  I'm in two districts! (3+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:
    Xenocrypt, aggou, MichaelNY

    I just realized that the boundary between the proposed districts for Shuler and McHenry actually cuts right through my property. I'm still registered in the Shuler district, though I could easily switch to one of the McHenry addresses if I wanted to.

    •  Haha, that's hilarious. (0+ / 0-)

      I wish mine did.... Do you think you'll switch, or remain in Shuler's?

      DKE! “Music speaks what cannot be expressed, soothes the mind and gives it rest, heals the heart and makes it whole, flows from heaven to the soul.” anonymous

      by aggou on Sat Jul 02, 2011 at 03:09:21 PM PDT

      [ Parent ]

      •  It's tempting to switch (1+ / 0-)
        Recommended by:
        aggou

        My residence is on a sort of wedge-shaped property with roads on three sides. There are four addresses one of which is further sub-divided into two rental units. My primary address is on the Shuler side of the line while the other three are on the McHenry side.

        If it doesn't much matter anyhow, I could at least get the satisfaction of voting against McHenry..

        •  I feel the same about (0+ / 0-)

          my district. They kept me in the 6th, although, I would've have mind to have been moved to the 8th, just to vote out Kissell. However, I would've preferred to have been added to Ellmer's district. At least she's not 80 bagilian years old...

          DKE! “Music speaks what cannot be expressed, soothes the mind and gives it rest, heals the heart and makes it whole, flows from heaven to the soul.” anonymous

          by aggou on Sat Jul 02, 2011 at 04:10:34 PM PDT

          [ Parent ]

  •  Gerrymanders like North Carolina and... (0+ / 0-)

    ... Illinois are in large part responsible for the deeply divided government we have today. There is no incentive for anyone to move to the center, in fact compromise with the opposition party will probably get you beat in a primary. Not that I blame Democrats or Republicans for drawing the best maps they can for themselves, you gotta do what you gotta do, but there has got to be a better way.

    •  That's the nature of our 2 party system (2+ / 0-)
      Recommended by:
      MichaelNY, SaoMagnifico

      Its all about driving out your base rather than appealing to other voters.  If we had proportional representation then gerrymanders would have almost no impact.

    •  Chicken and egg (1+ / 0-)
      Recommended by:
      roguemapper

      Are they responsible for divided government or caused by divided government or both? Anyway, though there have been some recent moves toward redistricting by committee or "fair" redistricting, gerrymandering seems here to stay, at least for some time to come.

      Formerly Pan on Swing State Project

      by MichaelNY on Sat Jul 02, 2011 at 09:17:41 PM PDT

      [ Parent ]

    •  Strongly disagree (0+ / 0-)

      States like Iowa and Arizona that have nonpartisan redistricting haven't produced any representatives that are inclined to moderate and compromise. If you want to argue that more competitive districts would lead to more moderate representation, you need only to look at all of the swing and Dem-leaning districts the Republicans won last year. Has a single member of Congress from the Republican Party shown any willingness to compromise on anything? The problems are far deeper than Congressional redistricting.

  •  I assume... (2+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:
    MichaelNY, SaoMagnifico

    that the media will respond with the appropriate level of outrage, as with the Illinois map.

    Right?

    Right?

    (crickets)

    I won't hold my breath.

    The man who reads nothing at all is better educated than the man who reads nothing but newspapers. -Thomas Jefferson

    by PeteyP on Sat Jul 02, 2011 at 09:32:37 PM PDT

  •  Can demographics over 10 yrs make this better? (1+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:
    MichaelNY

    55%-57% is not much leeway for demographic changes over a 10 year period.  

    NC has seen a huge amount of population growth in the triangle and dem-heavy areas that could spill out to other districts in the out years of this gerrymander.  Not to mention minority population growth that could over time make this more competitive.

    It just doesn't seem to me like you can really take a state that voted for Obama (although slightly) in 2008, still seem to be holding relatively well for Obama in 2012 (according to recent PPP polling) and have it really hold up 10-3 GOP for 10 years.  

    They didn't create any uber-safe GOP districts and the GOP representatives we currently have are out on the furtherest of the far right wing of the party (Virginia Foxx, Ellmers, etc.).  

    Is there a chance that this could really come back to screw the GOP in the later years?  

    Proud to share my name with Howard Dean

    by DeanNC on Mon Jul 04, 2011 at 07:04:55 AM PDT

    •  Don't forget that this isn't 55-57% in an average (1+ / 0-)
      Recommended by:
      MichaelNY

      year, it's 55-57% in the best year Democrats had in a long time. Bush probably carried all GOP districts by more than 60-40.

      Most of the population growth is, as you mention, in the Triangle, which is still in a Democratic district. So the growth won't influence Republicans as much.

      Yes, it might spill out to other districts (2nd, 6th) but to a lesser degree.

      By the point the 2nd might become more competitive, Rep. Ellmers will be an entrenched multi-term incumbent, too.

      No, I think this is a very safe 9-3-McIntyre map and once/if McIntyre retires a 10-3.

    •  Brutally effective (1+ / 0-)
      Recommended by:
      MichaelNY

      To me it looks like Republicans did a very good job of gerrymandering. That's not to say Democrats are doomed to a 3-10 map for the rest of the decade, with the right candidates they  could win a couple of the Republican leaning districts but I think it is unlikely. To tough a hill to overcome even with the Demographic trends.

      North Carolina is a lot like Florida or Virginia, statewide they are currently tossups trending  Democratic but since Democrats tend to pack themselves together and Republicans are mostly in charge of drawing the lines  Republicans have the advantage for the House.

    •  Good question. (1+ / 0-)
      Recommended by:
      MichaelNY

      "Union, near Charlotte, was the state's fastest-growing at 62%, with 201,292 people. Johnston, near Raleigh, was up 38.4% with 168,787 people."
      http://www.usatoday.com/...

      I heard 25 percent of NC is under 18.

  •  Blue Dogs (0+ / 0-)

    Heath Schuller, although a Dem has done everything against Democrats in the House. I'm not sorry to see his a$$ go. As far as I'm concerned, he should switch and become a republican.

    •  He voted to end DADT, and (3+ / 0-)
      Recommended by:
      Minnesota Mike, jncca, MichaelNY

      Voted for the environment. If he were able to win again, it would make it more likely that Nancy Pelosi would be Speaker Pelosi againd. I doubt he will run now.

    •  Give me a Blue Dog over a Republican anyday (3+ / 0-)
      Recommended by:
      We Won, jncca, MichaelNY

      In that District Shuler is the best you are going to get. For Democrats to regain control of the House they need to be the "Big Tent Party".

    •  Anyone happy to see Shuler go... (2+ / 0-)
      Recommended by:
      MichaelNY, LuckyLu

      ...does not remember Charles Taylor, the man he replaced.

      •  I don't remember him (0+ / 0-)

        Was he particularly egregious, or just a run-of-the-mill conservative Republican?

        Formerly Pan on Swing State Project

        by MichaelNY on Tue Jul 05, 2011 at 02:17:10 PM PDT

        [ Parent ]

        •  Particularly egregious (1+ / 0-)
          Recommended by:
          KingofSpades

          In addition to being corrupt (there was pretty clear implications but no hard proof that the S&L he owned was getting kickbacks though the GOP), he had one of the worst environmental records in Congress.  The Salvage Timber Rider was his work, as were other last-minute riders slipped in that freed up previously protected areas for clearcutting.  He was constantly attacking the EPA on endangered species, and introduced several attempts to gut the Clean Water Act.

          Shuler is a Blue Dog.  He ran and won as a Blue Dog.  He's never claimed to be anything else.  As much as I would love to have a Jamie Clark clone back in that seat, the days of total Democratic dominance of North Carolina were left in the 80's.  Shuler's the first Democrat to hold that seat since the early 1990s, and if this map holds, he'll probably be the last for a while.

  •  Omg (1+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:
    GayHillbilly

    putting blue ashevile in the odious mchenry's district? Hoe brazen can gerrymandering get?

  •  "GOP gerrymander in NC is a work of art. (1+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:
    MichaelNY

    State voted for Obama, but McCain won between 56-58% of the vote in 10 of 13 new districts."

    Tweet by Nate Silver

    http://scrutinyhooligans.us/...

  •  Cal Cunningham should run for (0+ / 0-)

    Something now. Cunningham easily could have won the primary against Marshall if he had a little more political experience. Burr will be even harder to beat next time.

  •  REDYSTROPHY/REDISTROPHY N/T (0+ / 0-)

    There's nothing wrong with Washington, DC that a direct hit by an asteroid wouldn't fix.

    by PDX Dem on Mon Jul 04, 2011 at 10:01:42 AM PDT

  •  OMG Let's hope not!!!! (0+ / 0-)

    I hope your comment about Heath Shuler becoming AD at Univ of Tenn was a throw-away line, based on rumor and bullshit.  

    Shuler was a fine college quarterback but that was his limit -- he bombed in the pros and his Congressional career has been a Big Fail.  

    Please don't send him to UT -- their athletic programs have enough problems already.

  •  RESCRooOooGED ...... n/t (0+ / 0-)

    You can safely assume you have created God in your own image when it turns out that God hates all the same people you do. Anne Lamott

    by zooecium on Mon Jul 04, 2011 at 10:21:32 AM PDT

  •  Time to go after Foxx and McHenry (1+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:
    MichaelNY

    I know that going from 38% for Obama to 42% for Obama is not that great a gain, but it must be repeated just how stupid and terrible Foxx and McHenry are.  Along with Elmers, NC has three of the most stupid, crazy, insane, and pathetically incompetent Republicans in the House.

    I maintain that with three strong, well backed candidates in those three districts, we should be able to pick up one of them.  Not because they're blue by nature, but because the GOP representatives for them are SO BAD that it should be possible to nearly sweep the independent vote.

    •  I support going after any Republican (0+ / 0-)

      But do you have any evidence a Democrat could beat them in a district of that kind? Just because you consider them stupid, crazy, and incompetent doesn't mean the voters there agree.

      Formerly Pan on Swing State Project

      by MichaelNY on Tue Jul 05, 2011 at 02:18:57 PM PDT

      [ Parent ]

      •  Even the NC GOP is embarassed by them (1+ / 0-)
        Recommended by:
        KingofSpades

        Which is saying something, because the NC GOP is particularly full of nutcases.  

        Under this map, McHenry's district will absorb Asheville and Foxx's district will absorb Boone.  Renee Ellmers is only in Congress because Etheridge handled some Breitbart wannabes about as badly as you possibly can, and while her district has been made redder, it still includes a huge swath of southern Wake County, which isn't going to just roll over for her.

        Previously, NC Democrats had bottled up the biggest GOP strongholds into a few districts then made the rest of them either competitive or solid blue (like the 1st, 4th, and 12th).  The result is that those parts of the state had virtually no local Democratic party to speak of.  The good part about this is that the ossified NC Democratic infrastructure will be forced to creak to life to organize in those areas.

        2008 showed that the state as a whole is almost perfectly purple, and getting bluer every year.  The GOP can play district games to hold that off for a while, but the trends are in our favor.

  •  Also: on what planet is Asheville a "college town? (1+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:
    MichaelNY

    There are three four-year colleges in Buncombe county -- UNCA, Warren Wilson, and Montreat Anderson (in Black Mountain) -- that combined have fewer than 5,000 students annually enrolled.  That's in a city of 83k people and a county of 230k.

    Asheville is a tourist and retirement town with a small industrial base and a moderately sized commercial sector.  Colleges have very little impact on the economy there.  Boone is a college town, where the student enrollment is bigger than the permanent population of the town.

  •  Kissell NC-08 (1+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:
    MichaelNY

    If you look at the data from 2008, for the precincts that Kissell will have in 2012, Sen. Hagan beat Sen Dole.

    That includes Dole's home county of Rowan.

    Kissell has 4 years of being an effective incumbent in the majority of the precincts in the new district.

    Much of the new territory has been tremendously impacted by the loss of textile jobs overseas, which Kissell has been fighting against for the last 4 years.  

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