Statement on Congressional and Legislative Maps
North Carolina lawmakers have introduced new congressional and state legislative maps that gives a huge partisan advantage in congressional and state legislative races for next year.
The 2022 maps currently represent seven Republicans and seven Democrats for our state in Congress, and the map that will be voted on will likely yield an 11 to 3 Republican vs Democratic delegation. At the Senate level, we have cause for concern because Black legislators have been packed into the same district.
Even though both parties have utilized gerrymandering for their benefit, partisan use of such maps tends to have a decimating impact on Black communities who have historically had their rights and access to vote challenged or outright denied. As a historically marginalized community, Black voters are deeply limited in moving transformative political change when the collective power of their votes is diluted. However, this does not imply that the Black Vote is homogenous. Yet, due to the impacts of racist practices regarding housing, schooling, criminal justice, and economics, many Blacks may find similarities in their votes in hopes of addressing, overturning, and eliminating such racialized harms. Because of the heinousness of such practices, these discriminatory practices have a generational impact beyond the reversal of state-sanctioned discrimination. One can see how this gerrymandering not only works to destroy the Black vote but also raptures alliance and Black power building between Black communities, all for the sake of political gain.
“Every election cycle is important because of this,” according to Cassandra Stokes, democracy and economy coordinator for the NC Black Alliance. “Voters’ rights are being curtailed with each election cycle, making them question how we got here.”