Relief … and Chicanery!

You might think GerryMander would take a break from rigging our elections during the holidays. But not so. He and our heroine Maeve are facing off once again. Take a look:

There it is. No shame on GerryMander’s part – nor by political parties while they continue to steal the value of our votes.

So what’s cooking today in that seedy world? The last Flushing Times blog described the new North Carolina Senate and House maps, redrawn because those we voted under in 2018 were found unconstitutional. Imagine that! Political parties cheating! Despite legitimate concerns by Common Cause over last-minute antics in the re-drawing process, the maps were approved by the court. For the first time in a decade, the 2020 elections will be held using constitutional maps! Clearly, a battle won (clean 2020 elections), but not the war. (Flushing GerryMander forever!)

What about maps for seats in the U.S. House of Representatives?

Great question! Over the past five weeks, the Charlotte Observer has published a non-stop barrage of headlines regards the Harper v. Lewis lawsuit. The suit triggered an October 28, 2019 injunction by Wake County Superior Court three-judge panel blocking congressional candidates from filing to run for those offices while the judges determined the constitutionality of the existing election district boundaries.

With the December 2, 2019 candidate filing period looming, the N.C. Legislature scrambled to create new U.S. Congressional maps. To the surprise of few, the maps smack of chicanery, and once again create dreaded “safe seats”. What does that mean? If you live in a district that favors the opposite party, your vote is worthless! How’s that for American democracy!

Though North Carolina is closely balanced between the two major political parties, the new maps give the GOP an 8-5 majority. Can’t you just feel the sleight-of-hand at work! Listen to Charlotte Observer editors in New NC maps have an old problem

…“Democrats and members of the public argued that the maps were still partisan.” N.C. Senator Jerry Tillman’s response? “Do you think it should be anything but partisan?” The editors pointed out that “the Superior Court sent the maps back to Republicans…with the admonition the their ‘extreme partisan gerrymandering’ was ‘contrary to the fundamental right of North Carolina citizens to have elections conducted freely and honestly to ascertain, fairly and truthfully, the will of the people.” No big matter to Senator Tillman. He’s made it abundantly clear that citizen’s rights are of no concern.

And that’s the bottom line of the entire gerrymander fiasco. Political parties will never, ever draw fair and non-partisan maps. To them, it’s only about power to have their way without regard for the people they represent…

…which brings us back to the Flush GerryMander mission. Such shenanigans by political parties won’t cease until gerrymandering is buried forever! They won’t cease until YOU stand up and pressure this legislature for a citizen-led redistricting process NOW. After all, the next opportunity doesn’t come around until 2029!

These 4 individuals have the power to save our democracy. Please call and email them again and again. Demand a permanent end to to election rigging. Senator Phil Berger (919-733-5708; Phil.Berger@ncleg.net); Senator Ralph Hise (919-733-3460; Ralph.Hise@ncleg.net); Representative Tim Moore (919-733-3451; Tim.Moore@ncleg.net); and Representative David Lewis (919-715-3015; David.Lewis@ncleg.net)

This is our state and our country! Don’t sit back and let political parties take it from us!