Raleigh NC, October 08, 2012, 10:48 am -- /EPR NETWORK/ -- Recent media reports indicate that advocacy groups found over two thousands voters who were assigned to the wrong state House, Senate or congressional districts. This information was gleaned from a “spot analysis” of six counties including: Wake, Durham, Wayne, Wilson, Robeson and Richmond. According to these reports, over two hundred of these voters received the wrong ballots on Election Day. Advocacy groups contend that black voters are much more likely than white voters to live in split precincts, which is the root of the issue.
One of the more impacted areas was the former NC Senate District 7 (Franklin, Granville, Vance, and Warren), which was carved up sending Franklin county as well as portions of Wake county into the newly formed NC Senate District 18. This forced 4-term senator, Doug Berger, into a new district where he is unknown to many of the Wake county voters.
Senate districts were redrawn by the Republican majority during the last legislative session. To accomplish this, Thomas Hofeller who lists his present occupation as, “Redistricting Consultant at Republican National Committee,” was employed. According to Senator Rucho, who served as the Chairman of the North Carolina Senate Redistricting Committee, Hofeller was employed to provide “the technical expertise.” Hofeller also lists years of work at the United States Department of Agriculture, which has its own checkered past regarding race relations.
Senator Berger had this to say:
Expertise to do what exactly? Receiving an incorrect ballot essentially disenfranchises a voter – it denies their participation in determining who represents them. The North Carolina Constitution is clear that ‘all government of right originates from the people, is founded upon their will only, and is instituted solely for the good of the whole.' This redistricting plan is good only for Republicans, not the whole, and certainly not for the aggrieved. For those who claim to be ‘Constitutional-first' the 15 th Amendment of the U.S. Constitution does not seem to matter; there is simply no lawful or rational basis for the division of the precincts.”
Despite the new district lines, NC Senate District 18 has two candidates with varying backgrounds; there is a clear choice between Senator Doug Berger and Chad Barefoot. Senator Doug Berger's distinguished legal career has included serving as a prosecutor, judge, and an attorney in private practice. Berger has also served as a middle and high school teacher as well as a youth football coach. Senator Berger's background in education and law has given him tremendous perspective and insight during his four terms in the Senate.
Source: Doug Berger for NC Senate