Wednesday News: Packing (also called cheating)


REPUBLICAN GERRYMANDERS CRAM DEMOCRATS INTO HANDFUL OF DISTRICTS: “These districts that are the ones that are in play have many, many less Democrats than we’d typically see,” Mattingly said. “The districts that are very safe for Democrats have a lot more Democrats, so they’ve been packed in it. And the districts that are very safe for Republicans actually have less Republicans, still leaving them safe.” The state House passed a bill for its new district lines Tuesday night, and the state Senate did the same for its own map Wednesday. Nothing is likely to change as the maps wait for approval in opposite chambers. Pat Ryan, a spokesperson for Senate Republicans, said Wednesday he’d need more details on the Duke team’s analysis of congressional map proposals before commenting. Translated: Give me some time to find an errant word or two to criticize and distract people from seeing the obvious.

NC HOUSE REPUBLICANS SINK MEDICAID EXPANSION COMPROMISE: North Carolina Senate Republicans were willing to include Medicaid expansion in a budget agreement with Gov. Roy Cooper but House Republicans did not agree, Senate leader Phil Berger said Tuesday night. “In the context of getting a budget this year, particularly the budget that had many of the terms, if not all of the terms, of the budgets that were passed by the House and the Senate, that crafting Medicaid expansion on top of that was, in my view, a trade that was worth considering,” said Berger, a Rockingham County Republican. House Speaker Tim Moore said last week that there are not the votes for Medicaid expansion in his caucus. Berger indicated Tuesday that Senate Republicans could have passed it. Cooper, a Democrat in his second term, has long wanted to expand Medicaid to hundreds of thousands of low-income adults in the state. It's not surprising about your caucus, since it includes racists, sexists, domestic terrorists, and traitors.

THIS MIGHT EXPLAIN BERGER'S SUDDEN INTEREST: A slim majority of Republican voters in North Carolina favor expanding Medicaid in the state, but the support grows to about three of every four when they learn more about who benefits from the taxpayer-funded health insurance program, according to a new poll. Advocacy group NC Child commissioned the poll, which will be released Wednesday, to demonstrate widespread support for expanding health coverage to tens of thousands of low-income working adults in North Carolina. “We have upwards of 100,000 parents with children at home who are in the coverage gap with no way to get health insurance," Michelle Hughes, executive director of NC Child, said in a statement. "They come from every background and political stripe. Every parent, regardless of their political affiliation, needs to be able to take care of their health, so they can take care of their kids." Six hundred registered Republican voters were surveyed between Oct. 26 and Oct. 28. When asked whether they back Medicaid expansion in North Carolina, 52 percent said yes, and 39 percent said no.

SPEAKING OF TRAITORS IN THE NC LEGISLATURE: Dozens of North Carolina House Democrats left the chamber when Republicans seated a new member who has said he was just outside the U.S. Capitol during the insurrection in January. All but a handful of Democratic caucus members left their desks for the exits as Rep. Donnie Loftis of Gaston County took the oath of office during Monday evening’s floor session, according to news outlets. The House Democrats said nothing about Loftis before they departed. One of the protest’s originators, Democratic Rep. Grier Martin of Wake County, was not in the chamber Monday night for other reasons, But Martin, also an Army veteran, said there was “no way I was going to be in the room when that guy took an oath to join the House of Representatives.” Gaston County Republicans last month picked Loftis -- a former county commissioner and Army veteran -- to succeed the late Rep. Dana Bumgardner and serve out the remainder of his two-year term representing the 109th House District. Loftis had already confirmed his attendance at the Jan. 6 rally. He said recently he had peacefully exercised his First Amendment right and had “zero involvement in the rioting and categorically condemn the storming of our Capitol building that day.” Dude, you were literally standing in the door when they broke in. Excuses are like @$$holes, everybody's got one, and they all stink.

VIRGINIA ISN'T FOR LOVERS ANYMORE, IT'S FOR HATERS: Former Democratic governor Terry McAuliffe came up short in his bid to become only the second Virginia governor since the Civil War to win a second term, with key suburban districts joining rural parts of the state in big swings toward Youngkin, leading to a slim GOP win. Republicans appeared to sweep the other statewide races, with Winsome Sears capturing lieutenant governor and Del. Jason Miyares (Virginia Beach) leading for attorney general. Sears becomes the first Black woman elected statewide in Virginia and Miyares would be the first Latino. A red wave also washed through the House of Delegates, turning a 55-45 Democratic majority into what appears likely to be a Republican majority. Youngkin’s victory, projected by the Associated Press and Edison Research, come only a year after Biden carried Virginia over Donald Trump by 10 points, a wild swing that casts doubt on Democrats’ agenda in Richmond and Washington alike. The former co-CEO of the Carlyle Group private equity firm, Youngkin flirted with Trump’s election conspiracy theories by refusing to directly acknowledge the legitimacy of Biden’s win until after he secured the GOP nomination in the spring. And that alone should have cost him this race. Jesus, Virginia, WTAF.