HuffPost: North Carolina Republicans Would Give Themselves A Huge Advantage With New Electoral Maps

Sam Levine
Aug 22, 2017
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North Carolina Republicans gave themselves a “large and durable” advantage in proposed state districts after a federal court forced them to redraw the electoral map, according to a new analysis released Tuesday.

The Campaign Legal Center analyzed the recently proposed maps using the “efficiency gap,” a mathematical method growing in popularity that measures the votes each party wastes in an election. The method has gained considerable attention because a federal court in part considered it when striking down Wisconsin’s state map on partisan grounds. The Campaign Legal Center is representing the plaintiffs challenging the maps in the appeal of that case, which the Supreme Court will hear in October.

When an efficiency gap is greater than 7 percent, experts say, it is extremely likely the majority will maintain its majority. The CLC analysis shows that in North Carolina, where Republicans have supermajorities in both legislative chambers, the expected efficiency gap for the proposed state House and Senate maps is just under 12 percent for each.

“Assuming a statewide uniform swing in the vote, in order for there to be a Republican majority in the House, Republicans will only need a statewide vote of 45.7 percent. By contrast, Democrats would need 54.8 percent of the vote to get a majority in the House. This is asymmetrical, and evidences a severe bias in favor of Republican voters,” Ruth Greenwood, voting rights counsel at the Campaign Legal Center, wrote in the analysis.

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