“This House race reflects how the Supreme Court has narrowed options for Black voters”

Patrick Marley of WaPo has this piece on South Carolina’s 1st CD. An excerpt:

This spring, the Supreme Court signed off on district lines in South Carolina that Republican state lawmakers said they had designed to benefit their party. The 1st District, held for the last four years by Rep. Nancy Mace (R), had previously been competitive but is now ranked solidly Republican by the nonpartisan Cook Political Report after the redrawn lines placed more Republican voters in the district and ensured the share of Black voters would not rise, staying at 17 percent.

A federal three-judge panel last year found that the district lines represented an unconstitutional racial gerrymander that “exiled” to a neighboring district tens of thousands of Black voters who overwhelmingly vote for Democrats. But Justice Samuel A. Alito Jr., writing in Mayfor a six-justice Supreme Court majority consisting entirely of GOP nominees, contended there was little evidence that South Carolina lawmakers had focused on race as they drew lines to maximize a Republican edge. . . .

In South Carolina, the ruling effectively locked in a 6-to-1 House advantage for the GOP in a state that Donald Trump won in 2020 with 55 percent of the vote. The lone Democrat, Rep. James E. Clyburn, is also the only Black South Carolina House member, and his district is the only one in the state with a plurality Black population. Statewide, just over a quarter of the population is African American.

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