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Two pairs of House Democrats together in NC congressional map

Posted July 19, 2011

— Republican mapmakers for North Carolina clamped down further Tuesday on the hopes of Democratic incumbents to return to Congress in 2013 as their latest proposed boundaries would put two pairs of current members in the same districts for potential primaries.

The latest draft map for North Carolina's 13 U.S. House seats for the next decade would place the residences of Congressmen David Price and Brad Miller in the same Piedmont district, said state Rep. David Lewis, R-Harnett, the state House's chief mapmaker. The homes of Congressmen Mike McIntyre and Larry Kissell would wind up in the same Sandhills district, Lewis said.

While a North Carolina resident can run for any congressional seat in the state, a candidate's decision to run outside of the person's home district puts the candidate at a disadvantage.

The changes came after GOP state legislators said they would adjust a July 1 map proposal to respond to concerns raised by 1st District Rep. G.K. Butterfield and others about his majority-black district and the U.S. Voting Rights Act when the initial proposal was released three weeks ago.

While Butterfield's boundaries were adjusted to include Durham County voters, remove Wake County votes and restore five eastern counties that face more scrutiny under anti-discrimination law, surrounding districts also had to be redrawn to ensure each district has exactly the same population. Lewis said that led to so-called "double-bunking" of incumbents.

"When you move one part of the map and ... you have to have the exact same number of people in every single district. Then you have to wind up making changes in almost every other district," Lewis told reporters.

The amended map puts Miller, who represents the 13th District from Raleigh, in the same 4th District with Price, the dean of the Democratic delegation from Chapel Hill. McIntyre, whose 7th District currently covers all or parts of nine southeastern counties, would be drawn into Kissell's 8th District, which currently stretches from Cumberland County to Charlotte.

Price said the new map "makes a mockery of the notion that districts should be compact and include communities of interest."

The 4th District now includes Durham and Orange counties and parts of Wake and Chatham counties, he noted. Under the proposed map, it would include parts of seven counties.

"I hope the General Assembly will think hard and consult widely before considering this map,” Price said in a statement.

The so-called "double-bunking" is not surprising since Miller said his Raleigh apartment sat barely 200 yards within the 13th Congressional District in the first edition of the new boundaries. McIntyre's Lumberton home was placed one block within his current 7th District.

The amended map was still expected to give North Carolina Republican candidates a better chance to win more congressional seats. Democrats have a 7-6 advantage among North Carolina's House delegation, and lost only one seat in the 2010 national GOP wave, when Republican Renee Ellmers upset Democratic incumbent Bob Etheridge.

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  • Gnathostomata Jul 20, 2011

    "...1st District Rep. G.K. Butterfield and others about his majority-black district..." In all seriousness, can someone please explain how jerrymandering to insure there is a district that has a majority of one particular race has anything to do with insuring everyone has the right to vote? Did I miss something, or do we now insure that each race has a biased person in the legislature?

  • 45ACP Jul 20, 2011

    "As I remember, when Bill Clinton left office, the country had a surplus in the budget. Bush came along and the surplus evaporated and we went the other way. How is it that the Democrat Party is to blame?"

    Because Obama has spent more in 2 years than all of the other presidents put toghether.

  • shutterbug Jul 20, 2011

    "Bigal-our country is about to become a 3rd world country because you libs have spent us into oblivion and bankruptcy!! We do not have a revenue problem-we have a spending problem-which has been made worse by the unqualified union organizer you elected!!"

    As I remember, when Bill Clinton left office, the country had a surplus in the budget. Bush came along and the surplus evaporated and we went the other way. How is it that the Democrat Party is to blame?

  • cwood3 Jul 20, 2011

    Bigal-our country is about to become a 3rd world country because you libs have spent us into oblivion and bankruptcy!!
    We do not have a revenue problem-we have a spending problem-which has been made worse by the unqualified union organizer you elected!!!

    Your party (and some moderate Republicans)has led us down this 3rd world route!! Spend, spend, tax, tax!!! Hopefully, some common sense will prevail with elected officials in DC. If they would quit campaigning and really do what is best for America, we'd all be better off!!! CUT SPENDING!! We have a spending problem-not a revenue problem!!

  • bigal02282 Jul 20, 2011

    All is well. In 2012, at the rate things are going, we'll either be a 3rd world State or we'll do away entirely with the Republicants. The 11% of Republicants who support most of the republican platform all post on here because they are worried sick about what's going to happen to them. The rest at least TRY to understand what's going on in our society.

  • mep Jul 20, 2011

    What a great tactic... put two pairs of current members in the same districts for potential primaries. Then the candidates can fight for the same job.... which will likely go to a Republican. Brilliant!

  • 45ACP Jul 20, 2011

    Democratic Party is the correct term.

  • aetius476 Jul 20, 2011

    Price needs to go. He has long outlived his usefulness as a representative for even liberal Chapel Hill area voters. Price has become a lockstep minion of Pelosi and the DNC. He no longer represents NC interests.

  • Rebelyell55 Jul 20, 2011

    No matter what the map shows, will we ever have any qualified persons running for election who are not owned by big buisness. Between Renee and Bob, the voters didn't have a good choice. Oh well a judge will fix it I'm sure.

  • hp277 Jul 20, 2011

    ddavis442 - Stop drinking the Teaparty/Fox News koolaid. Democratic Party is the correct usage. Members of the party are called Democrats.

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