INSTITUTE INDEX: GOP racial gerrymandering throws NC's moved-up primary into chaos

A panel of federal judges has ruled that North Carolina's 1st and 12th congressional districts are racial gerrymanders and ordered the legislature to draw new maps, throwing the state's March 15 primary election into uncertainty. (Maps via Wikipedia. Click on image for a larger version.)

Date on which a panel of federal judges threw out the congressional district maps North Carolina's Republican-led legislature approved in 2011, finding the 1st and 12th were drawn in such a way that "traditional redistricting principles were subordinated to race": 2/5/2016

Number of weeks the the court gave North Carolina lawmakers to draw new maps, a decision now under appeal to the U.S. Supreme Court: 2

Number of absentee ballots that have already been completed and returned in advance of the March 15 primary: hundreds

Month in which North Carolina lawmakers, with Gov. Pat McCrory's (R) approval, moved the state's primary from May to March to give the state a bigger role in the presidential race, despite warnings more time was needed to adjust to other recent election changes including new voter ID requirements: 9/2015

Under the previous maps drawn in 2001 by a Democratic-controlled legislature, number of North Carolina congressional districts with majority-black voting age populations: 0

Number of these majority-black voting districts under the Republican maps, leading to claims that the new maps packed black voters into segregated districts and weakened their influence elsewhere: 2

In North Carolina's 2014 congressional elections, percent breakdown between Republican voters and Democratic voters: 55-44

Following that election, because of the way voting lines were drawn, breakdown between Republican- vs. Democrat-held congressional seats: 10-3

In another case involving charges of racial gerrymandering, year in which the U.S. Supreme Court sent Alabama's Republican-drawn congressional maps back to the lower court, which has asked the plaintiffs to draw an alternative map: 2015

Percent of the voting-age population that was black in the contested Alabama districts: over 70

In the contested North Carolina districts: just over 50

Date on which the U.S. Supreme Court is scheduled to hear another racial gerrymandering case, this one out of Virginia: 3/21/2016

(Click on figure to go to source.)