An idea for radical redistricting in NC

(cross-posted at dKos)

Since the Supreme Court decision throwing out TX-23 as unconstitutional also said that, in essence, states can redraw districts as they please (at least for now--John Tanner of Tennessee has a bill pending that would ban such practices), I figure we at least need plans to prove a point. To wit ... it's time to consider our own plans for re-redistricting North Carolina.

Looking at the map, I don't see a whole lot we can do to alter the map--and the fact that one Repub-held district is almost certainly going Dem (the 11th) while another just might be (the 8th) complicates things. But here's my idea ...

* Split Fayetteville between the 2nd (Bob Etheridge) and the 7th (Mike McIntyre). This should make it easier for us to keep those seats in the future. Also, give the 2nd all of the Nash County side of Rocky Mount and ship all of Sampson to the 3rd (Walter Jones, Jr.). Send Franklin County to the 1st (G. K. Butterfield)—the 1st is so heavily Democratic that the political balance will be unaffected.

* Send Rockingham County from the 13th (Brad Miller) to the 6th (Howard Coble). But dump off the 12th’s (Mel Watt) share of Greensboro there as well.

* Move all of northeastern Mecklenburg County to the 8th while moving part of Mooresville to the 12th.

* Move some precincts on Charlotte’s north side to the 9th (Sue Myrick) while letting the 10th (Patrick McHenry) have all of Gastonia and shifting Cornelius to the 12th.

* Move Polk and Avery counties to the 10th and bring McDowell and Rutherford counties from the 11th (Charles Taylor, soon to be Heath Shuler) while moving most of the 12th’s share of Winston-Salem to the 5th (Virginia Foxx). Also, move Watauga County to the 10th.

Net results:
* The 2nd and 7th stay Dem when Etheridge and McIntyre leave office.
*Coble gets a much tougher district to defend--one that has a reasonable shot at going Dem in a tidal wave, certainly when he retires.
*Depending on what happens this year, Hayes is eliminated or Larry Kissell becomes much safer.
*Myrick is eliminated.
*The 10th, already super-Republican, becomes even more Republican. Foxx gets displaced and is forced to run into a distirct that heavily favors McHenry, while a now-open 5th becomes a district that we have a reasonable shot at taking (due almost entirely to the influence of Winston-Salem).
*Shuler gets a lot more breathing room.