NORTH CAROLINA, USA — The North Carolina Supreme Court has agreed to rehear cases that could significantly impact the state's election process.
Harper v. Hall ruled the state constitution outlawed gerrymandering. Holmes v. Moore struck down the state's voter identification law. The State Supreme Court upheld both rulings less than two months ago.
The NC Supreme Court held a Democratic majority in December when the cases were first heard. Now, that majority is held by Republicans.
In hopes of getting different results, House Speaker Tim Moore and Senate leader Phil Berger asked that the justices rehear the case at the end of January.
The circumstances for this rehearing are rare, as in the last 30 years, only two cases were granted a rehearing out of 214 requests.
These rehearings could lead to new opinions that reinstate the photo ID mandate and strike down a precedent from the courts made in Feb. 2022 that declared the state constitution outlawed partisan gerrymandering.
In the redistricting case, the court struck down a state Senate map, calling it a partisan gerrymander from Republicans. The court ordered the state legislature to redraw the maps and ordered trial judges to oversee and approve that process.
The courts in December also upheld a 2021 ruling that invalidated a 2018 law requiring photo ID for voters.
“The legal issues are the same; the evidence is the same; and the controlling law is the same,” Associate Justice Anita Earls wrote in the dissent of the order agreeing to rehear the redistricting case. “The only thing that has changed is the political composition of the Court.”
Both cases will be reheard on March 14.
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