VICTORY! – On June 27, 2023, the U.S. Supreme Court issued an opinion in Moore v. Harper, holding that state legislatures “are bound by state constitutional restraints when exercising authority under the Elections Clause.” A worst-case ruling in this case would have handed partisan state lawmakers the power to manipulate our elections and undermine our votes.
Watch Common Cause’s National Redistricting Director Kathay Feng speak last December with Symone Sanders-Townsend on MSNBC about this high-stakes case.
On Wednesday, December 7, 2022, the Supreme Court of the United States heard oral arguments in Moore v. Harper. North Carolina Republican legislators are attempting a partisan power grab after the North Carolina Supreme Court struck down their illegal congressional gerrymander and adopted a map drawn by the Court’s special masters. The NC legislators argue that a radical legal concept, the so-called “independent state legislature theory,” allows them to manipulate congressional districts with no oversight from state courts. Read our press release here.
On December 13, 2021, Common Cause North Carolina, represented by Southern Coalition for Social Justice and Hogan Lovells, intervened in the consolidated cases of Harper v. Hall and League of Conservation Voters v. Hall. Specifically, we argued that the North Carolina Legislature’s process for drawing state legislative and Congressional voting maps ignored long-standing precedent and resulted in extreme partisan gerrymanders in violation of the North Carolina State Constitution. The motion to intervene challenged the Legislature’s maps themselves, alleging that state legislators crafted illegal partisan gerrymanders with devastating consequences for Black voters and their ability to elect the candidates of their choice.
On February 4, 2022, The North Carolina Supreme Court found that the House, Senate, and Congressional maps drawn by the NC General Assembly were unconstitutional partisan gerrymanders in violation of North Carolina law. The three-judge panel adopted the redrawn House and Senate maps and drew a new congressional map. The NC Supreme Court refused to stay implementation of the maps.
The Legislative Defendants then filed an Emergency Stay Application at the Supreme Court of the United States asking SCOTUS to stay the implementation of the new congressional map. We filed a brief in opposition arguing that this request is untimely, unnecessary, and would require SCOTUS to overturn decades of precedent and judicial process.
On March 7, 2022, U.S. Supreme Court rejected North Carolina lawmakers’ attempts to reinstate gerrymandered congressional maps.
On June 30, 2022, the Supreme Court granted certiorari in this case and heard oral arguments on December 7, 2022. We filed a brief opposing the historically baseless “independent state legislature theory” on October 19, 2022. Common Cause, alongside all other non-state respondents, argued that the constitutional text, structure, history, and precedent make clear that this theory must fail and the consequences of the “independent state legislature theory” would upend elections nationwide. Read our brief here.
Review both the previously invalidated and 2022 approved Congressional plans below.
Supreme Court of the United States
- Moore v. Harper opinion, June 2023
- Supplemental letter brief of respondent Common Cause, May 2023
- Supplemental letter brief of respondent Common Cause, March 2023
- Brief amicus curiae of United States
- Amicus brief of NAACP Legal Defense & Educational Fund, Inc.
- Amicus brief of Former Republican Elected and Executive Branch Officials
- Amicus brief of Boston University Center for Antiracist Research and Professor Atiba R. Ellis
- Amicus brief of Public Citizen
- Amicus brief of District of Columbia, Illinois, et al.
- Amicus brief of North Carolina Senator Daniel T. Blue, Jr. and North Carolina Representative Robert T. Reives, II
- Amicus brief of Scholars of the Founding Era
- Amicus brief of Secretaries of State of Colorado, et al.
- Amicus brief of Scholars of State Constitutional Law
- Amicus brief of Lawyers Defending American Democracy
- Amicus brief of Eugene H. Goldberg
- Amicus brief of Democracy and Race Scholars
- Amicus brief of U.S. Senator Amy Klobuchar et al.
- Amicus brief of Benjamin L. Ginsberg
- Amicus brief of American Bar Association
- Amicus brief of League of Women Voters of The United States and Leagues of Women Voters Representing 50 States and The District Of Columbia
- Amicus brief of State Constitutional Historians Lawrence Friedman and Robert F. Williams
- Amicus brief of Carolyn Shapiro, Nicholas O. Stephanopoulos, Daniel P. Tokaji
- Amicus brief of U.S. Senator Sheldon Whitehouse and Representative Henry “Hank” Johnson, Jr.
- Amicus brief of Gov. Arnold Schwarzenegger
- Amicus brief of Professor Evan Bernick
- Amicus brief of Professor Derek T. Muller
- Amicus brief of The Making Every Vote Count Foundation and The Leadership Now Foundation
- Amicus brief of The Lawyers’ Committee For Civil Rights Under Law, Advancement Project, Asian American Legal Defense And Education Fund, Asian Americans Advancing Justice, Demos, Latinojustice, Leadership Conference, National Association For The Advancement Of Colored People, National Education Association, National Urban League, Native American Rights Fund, New York County Lawyers’ Association, North Carolina State Conference Of The Naacp, People For The American Way & The Workers Circle
- Amicus brief of American Civil Liberties Union, the ACLU of North Carolina, the Rutherford Institute, and the Niskanen Center
- Amicus brief of Current and Former Election Administrators
- Amicus brief of FairDistricts Now
- Amicus brief of William M. Treanor
- Amicus brief of Brennan Center for Justice at NYU School of Law
- Amicus brief of Human Rights Watch
- Amicus brief of Retired Four-Star Admirals and Generals, and Former Service Secretaries of the U.S. Armed Forces
- Amicus brief of Bipartisan Group of Former Public Officials, Former Judges, and Election Experts From Pennsylvania
- Amicus brief of Donetta Davidson, Tracy Howard, Neal Kelley, Roxanna Moritz, Helen Purcell, Al Schmidt, DeForest Soaries, and Janice Winfrey
- Amicus brief of Law Forward, et al.
- Amicus brief of The National Association of Counties, The National League of Cities, The U.S. Conference of Mayors, The International City/County Management Association, and The International Municipal Lawyers Association
- Amicus brief of Constitutional Accountability Center
- Amicus brief of Hon. Rafael Hernandez Montañez, in his official capacity as Speaker of the Puerto Rico House of Representatives
- Amicus brief of Local Government Law Professors
- Amicus brief of Charles Plambeck and Joni Walser
- Amicus brief of Richard L. Hasen
- Amicus brief of Campaign Legal Center, Democracy 21, End Citizens United//Let America Vote Action Fund, National Council of Jewish Women, Inc., OneVirginia2021, RepresentUs, Republican Women for Progress, Unitarian Universalists for Social Justice, and Voters Not Politicians
- Brief amici curiae of Professors Akhil Reed Amar, Vikram David Amar and Steven Gow Calabresi
- Brief amicus curiae of Michael L. Rosin
- Brief amicus curiae of Stephen M. Shapiro
- Brief amici curiae of Thomas Griffith, et al.
- Common Cause brief and brief of non-state respondents
- Brief of state respondents
- Amicus Brief of White House Watch
- Brief amicus curiae of Arizona Independent Redistricting Commission
- Brief amici curiae of Arkansas, et al.
- Brief amicus curiae of America’s Future, Inc.
- Brief amicus curiae of Honest Elections Project
- Brief amici curiae of Citizens United, et al.
- Brief amici curiae of Lawyers Democracy Fund and State Legislators
- Brief amici curiae of Group of New York Voters
- Brief amicus curiae of Conference of Chief Justices
- Brief amicus curiae of America First Legal Foundation
- Brief amici curiae of Republican National Committee, NRCC, North Carolina Republican Party
- Brief amicus curiae of National Republican Redistricting Trust
- Brief amicus curiae of APA Watch
- Brief amicus curiae of The American Legislative Exchange Council
- Amicus Brief of the Claremont Institute’s Center for Constitutional Jurisprudence
- Brief amicus curiae of the Public Interest Legal Foundation
- Brief amicus curiae of Taxpayers for Honest Elections
- Amicus Brief of Hon. John R. Ashcroft, MO Secretary of State
- Amicus Brief of Wisconsin Voter Alliance and Pure Integrity Michigan Elections
- Amicus Brief of PA State Senator Kim Ward (R-39)
- Amicus Brief of Restoring Integrity and Trust in Elections, Inc.
- Brief of petitioners Timothy K. Moore et al.
- Supreme Court grants petition for certiorari
- Reply of petitioners Timothy Moore, et al.
- Brief of respondents Rebecca Harper, et al. in opposition
- Common Cause Brief in Opposition to Writ of Certioriai
- Brief of State Respondents in opposition
- Brief of respondents North Carolina League of Conservation Voters, Inc., et al.
- Brief amicus curiae of National Republican Redistricting Trust
- Denial of Stay
- Common Cause Opposition to Emergency Stay Petition
- Petition for a writ of certiorari
- Reply of applicants Timothy Moore, et al.
- Response to application from respondent Common Cause
- Response to application from respondents Rebecca Harper, et al.
- Response to Stay Application from State Defendants
- Letter from counsel of applicants
- Emergency Application for Stay Pending Petition for Writ of Certiorari
NC Supreme Court Appeal on Remedial Maps
Superior Court Three-Judge Panel Remedy Stage
NC Supreme Court First Appeal
Superior Court Three-Judge Panel Trial