Gannett/Wilmington Star News: Are Black voters in North Carolina at risk with redistricting maps under litigation? NAACP, Common Cause and NC voters sue Republican legislatures for racially gerrymandered maps
On Dec. 19, the North Carolina NAACP along with Common Cause, a nonpartisan nonprofit advocating for fair and transparent elections, and a group of eight residents filed a lawsuit against Republican mapmakers, including Philip Berger, Tim Moore and the State Board of Elections, for passing allegedly racially adjusted and rushed gerrymandered maps.
Bob Phillips, the executive director at Common Cause North Carolina, said in an interview that minority communities, like the Black community, will not get to choose representation that they see fit and that will impact how and if their communities' needs get met.
Phillips, who has been with the organization since 2001, has seen years of gerrymandering, but believes that in recent years the issue has gotten worse. This isn't necessarily a partisan problem, Phillips said, rather a problem of whoever is currently in power.
"Twenty years ago, Democrats were gerrymandering, not quite as robustly as they are now because they didn't have the technology for one, but they were in charge of drawing the maps and Democrats at the time had no inclination to consider redistricting reform," Phillips said. "The irony was I was standing shoulder-to-shoulder with Republicans in North Carolina calling for redistricting reform when the Democrats were in charge. Fast forward to today and it's reversed."