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The seemingly never-ending saga surrounding redistricting in North Carolina appears to have come to an end this week with the N.C. Supreme Court rejecting final appeals to the remedial maps late Wednesday night. With the final results of redistricting and candidate filing back open, members of the General Assembly can now look forward to interim committee meetings in the weeks ahead.
Cases of and hospitalizations from the coronavirus have continued to drop precipitously. As of this morning, in the state of North Carolina, there were 3,650 confirmed cases of the coronavirus. There are 1,982 individuals hospitalized, and sadly, 22,449 confirmed deaths. 75% of the total adult population has been vaccinated with at least two shots.
As we all continue to feel the effects of the global pandemic and adjust to a new normal, we want to highlight a few ways our clients across North Carolina have worked to support residents and make this time a little easier for those throughout the state. Read more about what our clients are doing to help by clicking here.
For more information on COVID-19 in North Carolina, click here to visit the Department of Health and Human Services website, and be sure to stay up to date on the latest federal guidelines issued by the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) by clicking here.
On Wednesday, a North Carolina Superior Court 3-judge panel approved the General Assembly’s drawing of the state House and state Senate maps, but substituted in their special master’s Congressional map. This ruling was followed by subsequent appeals from all parties on all maps, but those appeals were denied by the state’s highest court on Wednesday night. While there is ultimately still the possibility of an appeal to the United States Supreme Court, it appears that these will be the maps for the 2022 election cycle since filing opened Thursday morning at 8:00am. Thus, it looks as if the 2022 election is moving forward with these three maps.
The Congressional map has a 7-6-1 breakdown, meaning that there should be seven safe Republican seats, six safe Democratic seats, and one toss-up district. Recent polling indicates that Republicans are performing ahead of Democrats on the generic ballot, potentially making it likely that Republicans will pick up the toss up district in November, leaving a minimum of an 8-6 Republican advantage in the Congressional map for the 2022 election cycle.
As for the state Senate, this map has a 22-18-10 breakdown, meaning that there should be 22 Republicans, 18 Democrats, and 10 toss up seats. Of the 10 toss up districts, on paper six of them should be Democrat and four Republican. However, since Republicans are polling ahead for the 2022 election cycle, some are predicting as high as 29 Republicans could be elected in 2022. More modest predictions have the Senate ending up with a 28-22 Republican majority. Senate Republicans should maintain a majority, but not a supermajority.
The state House map has a 53-45-22 breakdown, meaning that there should be 53 Republicans, 45 Democrats, and 22 toss up seats. Republicans will more than likely end up having more than 60 members of the House, but their majorities will be dependent upon their performance on Election Day. Some estimates have the Republicans regaining their supermajority in the House, while more modest estimates have them staying in the simple majority. Republicans will likely hold their majority in the state House.
Overall, if the political environment remains as it is today, North Carolina will most likely continue to have Republican majorities in both state legislative chambers, but the chances of supermajorities look to be unlikely. As for the Congressional map, North Carolina will likely send eight or nine Republicans and six or seven Democrats to Washington, DC.
Barring a successful appeal to the U.S. Supreme Court, candidates in North Carolina can file for office through next Friday, March 4. The period will also include filing for rescheduled municipal elections from last year. In the coming weeks our team will provide an overview of candidate filing and a look at how the races are shaping out.
Upcoming Legislative Meetings
Tuesday, March 1
10:00AM: Joint Legislative Oversight Committee on Access to Healthcare and Medicaid Expansion