Voting maps okayed despite flaws

Posted November 1, 2011

Despite errors caused by a software glitch that left thousands of voters unassigned to legislative or congressional districts, the US Dept. of Justice has given the state's GOP-penned redistricting maps pre-clearance approval on the first round of reviews - for the first time in three decades.

The news came this evening, on the heels of news that the GOP's precinct-splitting strategy had led to software glitches violating the prescribed Congressional district variance of plus or minus one voter.

The pre-clearance means the new maps can be put into effect immediately - absent a legal challenge from Dems and other groups, who've already said they intend to file suit against the new maps.

In a joint statement, Redistricting chairmen Sen. Bob Rucho (R-Mecklenburg) and Rep. David Lewis (R-Harnett) claimed victory.

“The Obama Justice Department’s stamp of approval on our redistricting plans confirms what we’ve said all along: these are fair and legal maps that give a strong voice to all voters. It also should silence the racially-charged rhetoric and put to rest the baseless claim that these maps were somehow discriminatory," the statement read. 

“Today’s historic decision by the Obama Justice Department, after thorough review by Attorney General Holder, proves that we followed the letter and intent of the law in protecting the voting rights of minorities." 

Democrats said the flaws exposed today were "reason enough to question this plan." 

"The review by the Department of Justice focused on one narrow aspect of the plan and preclearance was not unexpected. We continue to believe this redistricting proposal is divisive, highly partisan and legally deficient. As we learned just today, the plan failed to account for thousands of people," said House Minority Leader Joe Hackney in a statement. "We will pursue whatever remedies are available to mitigate these shortcomings.


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  • JustOneGodLessThanU Nov 8, 2011

    Simple question: Do you value the “do unto others" philosophy? If so, you must oppose this egregious violation of that rule...or admit that you don’t really care about anyone else but yourself and your hypocritical “values”.

    Here’s the deal:

    1- NC is: 44% Democrat and only 31% Republican ( www.app.sboe.state.nc.us/NCSBE/VR/VR%20Stats/vr_stats_results.asp?EC=07-16-2011 )

    2- NC’s current representation is 7 Dems & 6 Repubs = 13 seats. This is a relatively fair split, even somewhat under-representing Dems.

    3- When the Repubs are done changing NC's district maps...representation will be 3 Dems and 10 Repubs = 13 seats, even though there are 70% more Dems, this gives Repubs 300% of the representation.

    So, what are your values?

  • jbyrd Nov 2, 2011

    "Dept. of Justice has given the state's GOP-penned redistricting maps pre-clearance approval on the first round of reviews - for the first time in three decades."

    Does that not say it all? For 3 decades the democrats were so obviously biased in their redistricting they had to redraw for approval while the republicans with THEIR FIRST CHANCE in 100 years gets it right the first time.

  • DaddyDave Nov 2, 2011

    It's funny watching the dems complain about this, when just in 2010, for the 13 avail seats in the US House, REPs got 54% of the vote, but only got 46.15% of the seats, because of the Dem created "Gerrymandered" districts.

    The Repubs follow similar trends to what the Dems did in creating the majority-minority districts as mandated by LAW under the Voters Right Act of 68 and ruled on by the Supreme court to mandate it. But now they are accused of "diluting the black vote", etc, etc. Yawn

    Good thing the Obama DOJ is too busy trying to cover up scandals like Fast and Furious, Solendra, etc to do what they said to political news pundits back in Elections on Nov 2010 they would do: "Block any repub redistricting efforts in states covered by VRA of 65"

    But with video of the pundits admitting that, the DOJ would have been raked across the coals as being politically motivated and abuse of power. I kind of wish they would have done it. Would have been yet another DOJ scandal.

  • Gork Nov 2, 2011

    This is not a put-a-man-on-the-moon level effort - it shouldn't have been too hard to get it right.

  • Road-wearier Nov 2, 2011

    Every ten years the Republicans bitterly complained about the Democrats gerrymandering districts. They complained it was wrong, it was unfair to voters, it was unfair to the citizens of NC. I detested it when the Democrats did it.

    Yet, given the chance did they do the right thing and create balanced districts? Of course not.

    They did precisely what they've been complaining about. I want a district where I choose my representative; not a district where the party in power chooses who represents me...because that's precisely what this does. Make the districts fair and let the politicians run on their positions and let them convince the voters to vote for them.

    But the Republicans are just like the Democrats - politicians. Power hungry people who care only about themselves. And they're all hypocritical sell outs...on BOTH sides of the aisle.

  • Crankyone Nov 2, 2011

    Anyhting to empower the producers, while diminishing the power of the leeches is a good plan.

  • tdouble232323 Nov 2, 2011

    Am I the only one that think we could use the existing county lines to draw the districts? I don't understand why our maps have to look like a Rorschach test. I guess the gerrymandering past 100 years has caused this.

  • The original American Nov 2, 2011

    The Dems drew voting lines to ensure that ALL Northcarolinians were more fairly and evenly represented.
    To believe that, one would have to be a fool, ignorant, and in need of significant mental therapy.

  • Tax Man Nov 2, 2011

    Yes, now let's get this election moving using the correct districts! 2012 you are looking better and better!

  • SaveEnergyMan Nov 2, 2011

    These districts don't look any better than the ones made by the Democrats. The tired old excuse of the other side did this too doesn't fly anymore. Both political parties are playing games with us to advance their selfish agendas, and they only seem to represent the most extreme of viewpoints on any issue. --Signed Frustrated Independent Voter.