Raleigh City Council member calls new district map ‘racial discriminatory’

RALEIGH, NC (WTVD) – The Raleigh City Council member who voted alone against a new district map at Tuesday’s council meeting calls the passed plan, which affects who voters vote for, “discriminatory.” racial”.

David Cox, who represents District B in northeast Raleigh, voted against the measure passed by Mayor Mary-Ann Baldwin and her six other council members, saying the result of moving many voters from District B to District A diluted its district’s minority population from 62% to 54%.

“Whether it was intentional or accidental, we have a redistricting plan that really disadvantages minority voters in the city of Raleigh,” Cox told ABC11.

The council must redraw the lines of its five electoral districts every 10 years after the U.S. census to keep them nearly equal in population.

City staff first drew three proposed maps based on six criteria: equal population, contiguity, compactness, preservation of communities of interest, avoidance of twinning of licensees, and consideration of future growth.

After months of collecting public feedback and input from redistricting organizations, the council decided the second of three maps would go ahead for Tuesday’s public hearing, later voting 7-1 to adopt the card.

In a Facebook post to the Brentwood borough Facebook page, which is largely affected by the redesigned map, Cox told his constituents that the new map was “grossly racially discriminatory” and that’s why he voted against it. , adding that 55% of the approximately 55,000 people who have been redistributed are racial minorities.

“I was concerned about that because according to the Voting Rights Act of 1965, the Voting Rights Act says we don’t have to dilute the minority population for redistricting,” said Cox, who n hasn’t yet said whether he will run for re-election in the fall. .

Baldwin sent the following statement to ABC11:

“These proposed districts were drawn by professional, non-partisan staff and gained initial support from seven out of eight City Council members who felt this map best met all of the criteria, including contiguity, compactness, preservation of communities of interest and consideration for the future growth of the city The proposed districts do not dilute the voting strength of any group and will serve our community well in the future.

The new map is being delivered to the Wake County Board of Elections for use in the November 2022 election.

Patrick Buffkin, a council member currently representing District A and a candidate for the U.S. Senate, sent the following statement to ABC11:

“The process that produced these maps featured an unprecedented level of transparency and public input, including review and input from civil rights organizations. A district should not be viewed in isolation, and politicians should not draw their own districts. The map the council adopted protects minority voters by ensuring that minority voters are not illegally concentrated or diluted in majority white districts. District B remains a majority minority district while that District A’s diversity is increased to ensure minority voters have a voice throughout the city.

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