Associated Press

Committee Examines Confederate Monument Relocation Request

A group of academic historians, preservationists and business people are meeting for the first time to evaluate the request by Democratic Gov. Roy Cooper’s administration to remove three Confederate monuments from North Carolina’s old Capitol grounds. A study committee comprised of five members from the state Historical Commission convenes Monday. Their job is to report to the full commission by April after looking at what actions it can take. A Cooper administration official requested in September the monuments be relocated to the Bentonville battlefield. The submission came weeks after Cooper said it was time to remove the monuments, particularly...

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Judges OK Expert Changes to North Carolina Legislative Maps

Federal judges have approved North Carolina legislative districts redrawn by an expert they hired to address their concerns about continued racial bias with some boundaries and new constitutional violations. The three-judge panel signed off Friday on changes made by a Stanford University law professor appointed as a special master. The changes to two dozen House and Senate districts would be used in this fall’s elections. The court brought in the expert to redo maps approved last summer by the Republican-controlled General Assembly after the same judges ruled districts initially approved in 2011 were illegal racial gerrymanders. GOP legislative leaders...

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Republicans Picking Up Pace on Judicial Redistricting Deal

Republicans in the North Carolina General Assembly are picking up the pace on creating new judicial election districts, with some leaders hopeful an agreement can be reached next week. House Speaker Tim Moore and the chamber’s top judicial mapmaker expressed optimism Friday there would be a deal soon. Moore told House colleagues to be prepared for full work sessions and votes starting Tuesday, the day after a House-Senate judicial reform committee meets. Key senators suggested more patience for their chamber in working out details, but committee co-chairman Sen. Warren Daniel said a deal could be reached by the end...

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N. Carolina: Sterilization Victims to Get Final Payment Soon

North Carolina officials say the third and final compensation payment to sterilization victims should be mailed soon, marking the end of a 15-year pursuit of financial help for them. A spokeswoman for the state Department of Administration tells the Winston-Salem Journal that officials are verifying the final number of qualified claimants and confirming addresses. Spokeswoman Gena Renfrow says payments will be prepared once that’s done. About 7,600 people were sterilized under North Carolina’s eugenics program before it ended in 1974. The N.C. Industrial Commission has certified more than 200 victims, who have received two previous payments of $20,000 and...

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Supreme Court Delays Order for North Carolina to Redraw Maps

The U.S. Supreme Court on Thursday delayed a lower-court order that would have forced North Carolina Republican lawmakers to redraw the state’s congressional districts by next week because of excessive partisan bias in current lines. The justices announced the stay after legal briefs were filed for and against the GOP legislators’ request for a delay. Their lawyers successfully argued that a three-judge panel’s ruling last week declaring the state congressional map an illegal partisan gerrymander should be on hold while similar cases involving Wisconsin legislative districts and one Maryland congressional district before the Supreme Court are considered. The court...

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Federal Judges Won’t Delay Requiring North Carolina Remap

Judges who struck down North Carolina’s congressional map for excessive partisanship have refused to delay their order telling Republican state lawmakers to draw new lines by next week. Tuesday’s decision by the three-judge federal panel was expected, given that the judges wrote 200-plus pages last week explaining why the boundaries are illegal political gerrymanders violating the U.S. Constitution. GOP legislators already have asked the U.S. Supreme Court to block the order’s enforcement. That request is pending. The lower-court judges wrote the lawmakers failed to meet their burden to justify delaying the order. The lawmakers cited cases already before the...

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Advocates: Judges’ Redistricting Order Shouldn’t Be Delayed

Advocacy groups and voters who’ve successfully sued so far in throwing out North Carolina’s congressional districts because of partisan gerrymandering say federal judges shouldn’t delay their order directing the legislature to draw new lines by next week. Republican legislative leaders have asked both the three-judge panel that ruled against them and the U.S. Supreme Court to block the rewrite order while similar Wisconsin and Maryland cases are settled by Supreme Court justices. Common Cause, the League of Women Voters and others on Friday told the three judges GOP lawmakers are making arguments nearly identical to those the judges rejected...

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North Carolina Republicans Ask Supreme Court to Block Redraw

North Carolina Republican legislative leaders have asked the U.S. Supreme Court to block enforcement of an order throwing out the state’s congressional map because the lines were too partisan. The lawmakers’ attorneys filed a motion Friday with Chief Justice John Roberts seeking delay of the lower court judges’ directive that the General Assembly draw a replacement map by Jan. 24. The emergency request says a redraw weeks before congressional candidate filing begins for the November election would create uncertainty among voters and potential candidates. And it also notes that it doesn’t make sense for North Carolina to redraw its...

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North Carolina GOP Lawmakers Seek Congressional Ruling Delay

North Carolina Republican legislators have started trying to block a federal court ruling ordering them to draw new congressional districts because the judges said the GOP went too far to protect its partisan advantage with the current boundaries. Lawyers for legislative leaders filed a request Thursday asking a three-judge panel to delay enforcement of their ruling filed this week directing lawmakers approve a new map by Jan. 24. The judges’ decision found illegal partisan gerrymandering in the 2016 congressional map from which Republicans won 10 of the state’s 13 seats. Republicans could face trouble retaining a few of those...

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North Carolina Lawmakers Back at Work, No New GenX Deal Yet

The North Carolina legislature returned to work Wednesday, passing a few simple bills but finishing with Republicans unable to agree on more immediate action for water quality challenges intensified since disclosure of the discharge of a little-studied chemical into a river. The House and Senate gaveled in at midday for a work session for the first time in nearly three months, with Republicans completing a slim agenda of confirming Democratic Gov. Roy Cooper’s appointments to the state Utilities Commission and Board of Agriculture. A handful of appointments by House Speaker Tim Moore also gained approval. The House also voted...

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