US DOJ WILL MONITOR WAKE AND MECKLENBURG VOTING SITES FOR HARASSMENT: The U.S. Department of Justice plans to send staffers to Mecklenburg and Wake counties on Election Day to monitor compliance with federal voting rights laws, including those that prohibit voter intimidation and voter suppression based on race, color, national origin or religion. The two N.C. counties are among 44 in 18 states that will be monitored Tuesday, the department announced Monday. “Our federal laws protect the right of all American citizens to vote without suffering discrimination, intimidation, and harassment,” said Eric S. Dreiband, Assistant Attorney General for the Civil Rights Division, in a statement Monday. “The work of the Civil Rights Division around each federal general election is a continuation of its historical mission to ensure that all of our citizens can freely exercise this most fundamental American right.” https://www.newsobserver.com/news/politics-government/election/article246896212.html
The GOP’s current 10-3 advantage relied on concentrating Democratic voters into some districts and splitting Democratic strongholds in others, a strategy known as “cracking and packing.” North Carolina’s new districts, now much more unpacked and uncracked than the previous iteration, all but assures a two-seat Democratic gain in districts centered in the Triangle and Triad, making the partisan split at least 8-5.
Whether the outcome this year stays 8-5 or results in further gains for Democrats hinges on a presidential race in a state with shifting demographics and a history of bouncing between parties on top of the ticket races.
Picking up (at least) two more seats in our Congressional Delegation is something positive to chew on these days. But I get an even bigger warm fuzzy knowing that North Carolina is actively defending or even growing the Democratic majority in the U.S. House. We are moving progress forward, not just helplessly watching from the fringe. That two seat gain is a victory we shouldn't take for granted, even if we fall short on these (three) other seats:
CORONAVIRUS HAS INFECTED OVER 276,000 NORTH CAROLINIANS: At least 276,692 people in North Carolina have tested positive for the coronavirus and 4,383 have died, according to state health officials. The N.C. Department of Health and Human Services on Sunday reported 2,057 new COVID-19 cases, down from 2,805 the day before. About 6% of tests were reported positive as of Friday, the latest day for which data is available. That’s higher than the 5% target set by health officials. At least 1,122 people in North Carolina were reportedly hospitalized with COVID-19 as of Sunday, down from 1,172 the day before. A Durham homeless shelter has reported 18 COVID-19 cases among residents and staff. Staff at the Urban Ministries of Durham learned Monday that a resident had tested positive for the virus. An additional 16 residents — who will also be moved to an isolated location — and one staff member subsequently tested positive. https://www.newsobserver.com/news/coronavirus/article246882852.html
I'll bet most people reading this have already voted -- and may have done even more to help with the election. You're among the 1% of people who are politically involved, I appreciate all you do. But there's still work to be done. As I write this, my wife Jane is coordinating a frenzy of phone banking here in Orange County. Her teams made 8000 calls yesterday.