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Associated Press: NC trial looks at partisan bias after US justices won’t

“State courts do not need to sit idly by while people’s constitutional rights are being violated just because the U.S. Supreme Court refused to act,” Common Cause attorney Stanton Jones told a three-judge panel in Raleigh. His clients want new maps drawn for the 2020 elections.

NPR: North Carolina Gerrymandering Trial Could Serve As Blueprint For Other States

"We have forever had a flawed process that preordains so many of our congressional and legislative elections to the party," asserted Bob Phillips of Common Cause North Carolina, whose group filed the lawsuit. "I believe what's at stake is the beginning of the end of that." Common Cause's challenge contends the legislative maps were drawn to maximize the power of the GOP and violate the state constitution's clauses guaranteeing the right to a free election, freedom of assembly and equal protection. "And what we say is that when mapmakers are putting districts together solely primarily based on how people vote, is that's a violation of all three," Phillips said.

Associated Press: Court: GOP mapmaker’s files allowed in gerrymandering trial

A few dozen computer files recovered from the home of a deceased Republican redistricting consultant can be offered as evidence in next week’s partisan gerrymandering trial in North Carolina, state judges ruled on Friday. The three-judge panel presiding over the trial that starts Monday sided with the election reform group Common Cause, the North Carolina Democratic Party and registered Democratic voters who are suing Republican lawmakers and challenging state House and Senate boundaries drawn in 2017.

Reuters: U.S. battle over partisan electoral maps to face major test in North Carolina

“It doesn’t provide everyone with an equal vote,” said Bob Phillips, the executive director of Common Cause North Carolina. “It really is an inability of citizens to hold their elected officials accountable.”

Associated Press: Files from dead mapmaker focus of NC redistricting hearing

Common Cause's lawyers told a three-judge panel they want to use only 35 of those documents in the trial, scheduled to begin July 15. They say the files will bolster their arguments that Republican legislators drew state legislative districts in August 2017 with excessive partisan intent, in violation of the state constitution.

Associated Press: NC redistricting fight turns to state courts after ruling

“We are confident that justice will prevail in the North Carolina courts,” said Bob Phillips with the North Carolina office of Common Cause, which is a plaintiff in both matters. “And we will continue to work with state lawmakers to reform our broken redistricting system that has left far too many without a voice in Raleigh.”

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