Supreme Court To Hear North Carolina Partisan Gerrymandering Challenge In March 2019

January 7, 2019

On January 4, 2019, the U.S. Supreme Court announced that it would hear two partisan gerrymandering cases this coming March. In one of the cases, Rucho v. Common Cause, Patterson Belknap is co-counsel for the plaintiffs-appellees.

Rucho is a challenge to North Carolina’s heavily gerrymandered congressional map, under which a state split evenly between Democratic and Republican voters is represented by a delegation of 10 Republicans and just 3 Democrats. Previously, a panel of judges in the U.S. District Court for the Middle District of North Carolina awarded judgment to the Firm’s clients after a bench trial, ruling for the first time in U.S. history that a state’s congressional map is an unconstitutional partisan gerrymander. The Supreme Court will now conduct plenary review of that ruling, with a final decision expected by June.

Patterson Belknap represents the nonpartisan organization Common Cause, the North Carolina Democratic Party, and 14 North Carolina voters in the case, which was initially filed in August 2016. The Firm attorneys involved with the case are Gregory L. Diskant, Jonah M. Knobler, Peter A. Nelson, and Elena Steiger-Reich.

To read Common Cause’s press release about the Supreme Court’s decision to hear the case, click here.