Today, the NAACP Legal Defense and Educational Fund, Inc., the South Carolina NAACP, and the ACLU of South Carolina sent a letter to the Georgetown County Council regarding its redistricting plans. The letter addresses several concerns raised by the coalition’s preliminary analysis of the County’s plans and maps. Additionally, the letter details the Council’s obligations under Section 2 of the Voting Rights Act and urges the Council to create meaningful opportunities to ensure that all residents’ voices are heard and meaningfully included at all stages of the redistricting process.
Based on the analysis, the 509 plan currently in consideration by the County Council unnecessarily packs Black voters into Districts 3 and 7 while reducing the Black voting population of District 4. Both of these strategies—the “packing” and “cracking”—will harm Black voters in Georgetown County by diluting their voting power and risking their ability to elect candidates of their choice. The County’s proposed plans likely violate Section 2 of the Voting Rights Act. The County Council maps must preserve VRA-compliant districts that remain necessary to ensure that Black voters in Georgetown County to elect candidates of their choice. The letter asks that the Council consider alternatives to the current proposed map that preserve Districts 3, 4 and 7 as VRA-compliant districts by maintaining Black voting populations above 50% in each of those districts.
Read the full letter here.
LDF has been closely monitoring the redistricting processes in South Carolina and other key states to prevent discriminatory redistricting plans and ensure that legislatures comply with their obligations under the Voting Rights Act and the U.S. Constitution. Read more about LDF’s redistricting work here.
Founded in 1940, the NAACP Legal Defense and Educational Fund, Inc. (LDF) is the nation’s first civil and human rights law organization. LDF has been completely separate from the National Association for the Advancement of Colored People (NAACP) since 1957—although LDF was originally founded by the NAACP and shares its commitment to equal rights. LDF’s Thurgood Marshall Institute is a multi-disciplinary and collaborative hub within LDF that launches targeted campaigns and undertakes innovative research to shape the civil rights narrative. In media attributions, please refer to us as the NAACP Legal Defense Fund or LDF. Follow LDF on Twitter, Instagram and Facebook.