Primary elections, promising news from Virginia, and Election Protection

Primary elections were held in North Carolina last week, part of Super Tuesday. A long ballot with lots of positions to be decided upon by the voters on November 3rd. At least that’s the theory. As it has been for centuries, most seats have already been won – 9 months before we arrive at the polls. Those are “safe seats”, already configured to favor a specific political party regardless of how the voters cast their ballots. Using the election rigging process known as gerrymandering, the goal is to lodge power in the majority political party for the ensuing decade.

Consider this: In the 2018 general elections, approximately 100 of 120 seats in the North Carolina House were “safe”… won by the intended party 83% of the time. The North Carolina Senate boasted 76% safe seats. Even worse is the U.S. House of Representatives, where only 13% of the seats are competitive. In North Carolina’s delegation, not one of the 13 seats is competitive. It is nearly impossible to break the gerrymander, so in truth, actual voting is but a formality, the will of the voters be damned!

All that is to say that the “promise” of democracy – that We the People choose our representatives – is a charade. The majority political party in the legislature picks their voters to assure their wins and hold on to their power.

Unless we choose not to take action, we’re not powerless to change this grotesque circumstance. Let’s see how Maeve deals with gerrymandering – and GerryMander himself:

Now that’s action! And from a 12-year-old student! If Maeve can do it, so can we!

Exciting news north of the border as Virginia prepares to vote on a constitutional amendment this fall that will empanel a 16-member “redistricting commission” each decade once the census is complete – just in time for legislative maps to be redrawn in 2021! Political parties will no longer be able to draw voting maps in dark, steamy, secret locations. Passage of SJ 306 Constitutional Amendment; Virginia Redistricting Commission will 1) include citizens in the map-drawing process; 2) make the map-drawing process transparent; and 3) end partisan gerrymandering. Fingers crossed for the citizens of Virginia! They’re on the road to a functioning democracy.

On March 3rd Election Day, I served as a part of a many-hundred person Election Protection army. As in past elections, we’re stationed at polling places to help voters with problems and document abnormalities. A toll-free hotline to pro bono attorneys help when issues are beyond the expertise of those on the ground. We recorded but two minor incidents during the nearly 9-hour shift. Notably, there were no cases of people trying to confuse voters or challenge their voting rights. For the most part, that repeated itself across the state where Election Protection volunteers were sited.

A predominantly “clean” primary election day. But remember this: We can’t fix our issues and problems if we can’t fix our democracy. That must begin by ridding political parties of the right to rig our elections by gerrymandering. Only then will We the People be able to pick our representatives.

Will you help Flush GerryMander and make FAIR REDISTRICTING the law of the land?

  1. STAND UP & SPEAK OUT! Tell everyone you know that our elections are rigged.
  2. Sign the Common Cause End Gerrymandering Pledge.
  3. Demand these 4 individuals pass Senate Bill 673 which places responsibility for redistricting on an independent Citizens Commission. Please call and email them again and again. Senator Phil Berger (919-733-5708;; Senator Ralph Hise (919-733-3460;; Representative Tim Moore (919-733-3451;; and Representative David Lewis (919-715-3015;
  4. Volunteer with Fair Districts NC, Common Cause NC, Democracy North Carolina, and NC4RR.
  5. Consider a donation to support

Shenanigans by political parties won’t cease until gerrymandering is flushed forever! Politicians won’t cease until YOU STAND UP and pressure this legislature for a citizen-led redistricting process! NOW! Don’t forget that the next opportunity doesn’t come until 2029!

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