A panel of state judges’ decision not to delay the N.C. primary could have a significant effect on diversity at the N.C. General Assembly.
The N.C. Democratic Party has said that new congressional and state legislative districts, outlined by Republicans and approved by the U.S. Justice Department and federal courts, pack minority voters into fewer districts.
Rep. Susan Fisher, D-Buncombe, is one of the many Democratic women who have expressed concern about the maps and their potential effect on representation in the legislature.
“When you look at all the seats that were double-bunked in the redistricting process, a good number of those were women,” Fisher said.
“We were all struck by the message sent that women were not valued in the legislature as much as they should be.”
Double-bunking occurs when two legislators, who were previously in separate districts, are lumped together in one district.
Democrats say that while the judicial panel did not push the May 8 primary date back, it did acknowledge that the maps were worthy of further review.
“The fight is not over, the claims do in fact have merit and will be looked at further, and the judges went out of their way to say that,” said Walton Robinson, communications director for the N.C. Democratic Party.
Robinson said the maps are part of a larger plan by Republicans to “divide and conquer the state.”