Protestors want North Carolina's racially gerrymandered voting districts redrawn

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The group held a rally outside the general assembly Monday.

Indivisible NC, a grassroots voter advocacy organization attempted to put pressure on North Carolina's legislature to act now in getting racially gerrymandered voting districts redrawn.

The group held a rally outside the General Assembly Monday.

At issue, 28 voting districts in the state.
The Supreme Court ruled the districts were unconstitutionally gerrymandered to pack black voters into districts.

Critics say the districts have limited minority representation and weakened the black vote.

Jasmine Johnson attended Monday's rally. She lives in State Senate District 40.

"As a voter who was directly impacted by racial gerrymandering, I am frustrated and fed up with legislators who are choosing their voters instead of the other way around," she said.

The Republican-led legislature says it is waiting for the federal court to provide more direction to redraw the districts in a regular session, not a special session.

In a statement House Speaker Tim Moore said: "The North Carolina House of Representatives fully intends to comply with a federal court's order to redraw our legislative maps, however, we do not yet have guidance from the court on how to do so, nor have we been given time to undertake a comprehensive redistricting process with sufficient notice and opportunities for public input."

"Further, the federal court did provide direction for the legislature to undertake redistricting in a regular session, not a special session. The House intends to do so after receiving guidance from the court."

Last week, Governor Cooper called a special session for lawmakers to take up the matter but that measure was rejected by Republican General Assembly leaders.

Senator Ralph Hise, chairman of the Senate Select Committee on Elections, released a statement last week that echoed Speaker Moore's remarks.

"The courts have yet to give the legislature direction on this matter, and we will be prepared to undertake a thorough redistricting process with ample notice and opportunities for public input when they do.

"In the meantime, we refuse to be manipulated by the governor into having an unconstitutional special session and will keep our focus on passing a balanced state budget that raises teacher pay, provides relief to the communities affected by Hurricane Matthew and puts money back into the pockets of middle-class families."

Monday, in a statement, Governor Cooper said North Carolina should not hold another session or have another budget voted on by an unconstitutional legislature.
Maps should be drawn this month and an election held before next year's legislative session.

On Friday, the United States District Court for the Middle District of North Carolina sent a notice to the state and the plaintiffs involved in the suit that the court intends "to act promptly on the matter upon obtaining jurisdiction from the Supreme Court."

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