On Monday, a panel of state judges in North Carolina ruled that a new congressional district map drawn by Republican state legislators will be used in the 2020 election. While Democrats argued that the map is still a partisan gerrymander that gives Republicans a likely 8-5 advantage, the judges unanimously sided with Republicans who argued that striking down this map could delay primary elections scheduled for March 2020.
This congressional district map will only be in effect for the 2020 election cycle. A new congressional district map will be drawn in 2022, when North Carolina is expected to be allotted an additional, 14th, district because of population growth over the last decade.
Democrats Will Likely Gain Two Seats
While Democrats opposed the new map, they will likely gain two seats versus the status quo. They currently control only three of North Carolina’s 13 congressional seats, reflecting the 2016 Republican gerrymander that state judges struck down in October. The gerrymander was effective in the 2018 midterm elections - they won 77 percent of the state’s seats despite winning only 51 percent of the two-party vote statewide.
According to calculations by Daily Kos Elections, five of the 13 new districts voted for Hillary Clinton in the 2016 presidential election, while the remaining eight districts voted for Donald Trump. Democrats should be able to flip the newly-redrawn 2nd district (Clinton +24) and the 6th district (Clinton +21) easily. Republicans…