A federal court is going through with plans to hire an outside expert to redraw several North Carolina legislative districts because judges are concerned Republican lawmakers earlier this year did not fix problems involving racial bias found in some boundaries. An order from a three-judge panel Wednesday appointed a Stanford University law professor to redraw two Senate and seven House districts by December 1.
The ruling rejects arguments from GOP legislative leaders that they should get another chance at remapping the districts. The legislature already redrew the lines in August after a court struck down 28 boundaries for being illegal racial gerrymanders. The order says special master Nathaniel Persily can look at voter racial data while doing his work, but cannot use election results. The judges plan to review his work in a court hearing in January. Candidate filing begins in February.