The North Carolina chapter of the NAACP will challenge the state’s Republican-drawn congressional map, according to The Associated Press.
This puts at risk a plan that could net the GOP as many as four House seats and prematurely end the careers of Democratic Reps. Heath Shuler, Brad Miller, Larry Kissell and Mike McIntyre.
Because of North Carolina’s history of voter suppression, the Voting Rights Act requires the state to get approval of its map from the U.S. Justice Department. With the NAACP accusing Republicans of intentionally packing African Americans into a few districts to weaken their voting power — and with the DOJ in Democratic hands — there is a good chance the map could be thrown out.
While this would be good news for the four Democratic House members, they are unlikely to be in districts as safe as those they currently represent, even under a court-drawn plan, as the current map is a Democratic gerrymander from a decade ago. But if the NAACP succeeds in its goal of striking down the map, it could thwart Republicans’ efforts to turn what is now a 7-to-6 Democratic advantage in the state’s House delegation into a 10-to-3 Republican edge.