Tuesday, October 11, 2022

North Carolina's Congressional Analysis for 2022's Election

By Whitney Ross Manzo and Michael Bitzer

With the new (and temporary) congressional map, it may just make sense to say “here’s what we know for this coming election—after Nov. 8, all bets are off” kind of approach when it comes to analyzing the U.S. House of Representative districts for the upcoming general election. 

In conducting our some of our analysis, we utilized the "Big 3" combined election results from 2020: U.S. president, U.S. Senate, and the N.C. governor's contests. Taking the precinct results from these three and assigning them into the Interim Congressional District Map, we arrive at a spread of the congressional districts, from strong Republican to most competitive to strong Democratic (we define "strong" as being 60 percent or over for one party; "likely" for one party as between 55-59 percent for that party; and "competitive but lean to one party" as 50-54 percent for that party, based on the combined results for the three 2020 contests). 

Using this combined 2020 election results, we can then classify what might be the potential voting 'behavior' of the congressional districts, with an understanding that past NC voting patterns are very close in relationship to future voting patterns.

We'll also give the Cook Political Report's Partisan Voting Index rating for each district. Now, we begin with the analysis moving from Republican districts to Democratic districts to what appears to be the true competitive congressional district in North Carolina.

Safe Republican Districts:

The Third Congressional District

The Third Congressional District is the most traditional eastern district, covering a substantial portion of the state's Atlantic coastline while stretching into the coastal plains. This was the district served by long-time Representative Walter B. Jones, a Republican from 1995 until his passing in 2019. In that year's special election, Republican Greg Murphy claimed the seat and has held it since. 

With the redrawing by a district court and three special masters, the Third District lost several northeastern rural counties, while adding several counties inland from the coast. Major municipalities include Jacksonville, New Bern, Washington, and parts of Greenville and Goldsboro. The district is a plurality rural, with 45 percent of its voters residing in a rural county, with another third of its voters in urban suburbs and only 13 percent in a central urban city. This rural dominance contributes to its Republican advantage, with GOP registered voters commanding 37 percent of the total voters. Registered Unaffiliated voters are close behind, with 35 percent, while registered Democrats are at 28 percent. 

The Third is slightly more White, non-Hispanic than the state as whole (69 percent compared to 64 percent), with 18 percent of its voters being Black/African American. Both female and male voters in the district tend to be more Republican, with men at 41 percent GOP and women at 35 percent. Its voter pool is also slightly older than the state, with voters under the age of 41 being 36 percent, compared to the state's 39 percent. Republican incumbent Murphy had raised a substantial warchest in the middle of the summer, with $1.4 million, compared to $51,000 raised by his Democratic opponent, Barbara Gaskins

With the district seeing its combined 2020 Big 3 election results at over 60 percent Republican, and the Cook Political Report giving it an R+15 Partisan Voting Index, it would take a seismic shift in the electorate to unseat incumbent Representative Murphy from securing another term in office.

The Eighth Congressional District

That same seismic shift would be needed to unseat a Republican from winning the state's Eighth Congressional District as well. The Eighth has seen a pretty significant move in its geographic coverage, moving away the 2019 "bacon-slice" district that ran from the suburban Cabarrus County into rural counties of Stanly, Montgomery, Moore, Lee and Harnett and ending in Cumberland County. For this year's election, it's more a compact north-south district, from Davidson and Rowan counties through Cabarrus, Stanly, and Montgomery and ending on the South Carolina state line with Union, Anson, and Richmond (all three formerly in the old Ninth District). 

Another distinctive move with the Eight is the current incumbent running for election, that of the old Ninth's Dan Bishop. Bishop and the current Eight's congressmen Richard Hudson basically 'flipped' their target districts, with Hudson going to the new Ninth. Bishop won a special election in 2019 for the Ninth, after that race's 2018 contest was called into question amidst allegations of election fraud involving absentee by mail ballots and the connection to the then-Republican candidate in the contest. 

Challenging the two-term incumbent Republican is Democrat Scott Huffman, who has run several times prior, most recently as Ted Budd's challenger in the 2020 contest for the Thirteen Congressional District. But as was the case in the Third, Huffman had raised a little over $51,000 by the middle of the summer, compared to $1.5 million raised by Bishop. 

The Eighth's voter pool breaks down into plurality-registered Republican district (42 percent), while Unaffiliated voters are a third and registered Democrats are barely a quarter. The district is much more White non-Hispanic than the state's average, with Black/African American voters only at 14 percent (compared to 20 percent state-wide). The district is slightly older than the state's voter pool, with Boomers at 29 percent and Greatest/Silent generations at 9 percent. 

With the surrounding suburban counties of the Charlotte Metropolitan Statistical Area composing 83 percent of the registered voters, and another 16 percent in rural counties, the district's natural political behavior leans Republican, with the "Big 3" 2020 election results being a 2-1 Republican advantage, with a Republican +20 PVI from the Cook Political Report. But it can't claim the status of 'most' GOP district, as that goes to the district skipping over neighboring Mecklenburg and into the surrounding suburban counties to the west. 

The Tenth Congressional District

Akin to its other two districts, the strongest Republican district is the Tenth, with Patrick McHenry continuing his GOP nomination for the November contest, facing Democratic challenger Pam Genant. McHenry has served in the U.S. House since 2005, and has steadily risen up the leadership ranks, with a likely chairmanship of the Financial Services Committee after serving as the committee's ranking member if Republicans win control for 2023. 

The district retains its historic Foothills/Mountains design, stretching from Iredell County and the upper suburbs of Charlotte westward into Burke and Rutherford counties. While the Hickory-Lenoir-Morganton Metropolitan Statistical Area is considered an 'urban' area, this is probably the least Democratic urban area of the state. Nearly half of the Tenth's voters live in "surrounding suburban county," with almost 20 percent in rural counties and a quarter in the urban suburbs. 

Showing the power of incumbency and his leadership role in the House GOP conference, McHenry had raised nearly $2.8 million so far by the middle of the summer, compared to $157,000 by Genant. 

This suburban/rural district's Republican tendencies are show in the fact that 42 percent of its voters are registered Republican, with 35 percent Unaffiliated and only 22 percent registered Democratic, the lowest of any of the fourteen congressional districts in the state. With a 7-3 Republican advantage in the "Big 3" 2020 elections and the Cook Political Report's PVI of Republican +22, this is the most Republican district in the state. 

Likely Republican: 

The Fifth Congressional District

The Fifth District is just barely within the 55-59 percent classification (at the top of the scale, moving close to Safe Republican), but in this year's mid-term election dynamic, November's final results could indicate it was a safe Republican seat. The district runs long the NC/Tennessee and Virginia lines, making up a significant mountain district, and is represented by Republican Virginia Foxx. She entered the U.S. House the same year as Patrick McHenry (2005), and has served as chair of the House's Education and the Workforce Committee. 

Foxx is being challenged this fall by Democrat Kyle Parrish in a district that contains urban areas of Winston-Salem but then stretches into rural counties of the upper mountains of the state. The district is 36 percent rural, 29 percent urban/central city, 18 percent urban suburbs, and 17 percent surrounding suburban counties. However, White non-Hispanic voters are three-fourths of the registered voters, while Black/African American voters are only 12 percent and Hispanic/Latino voters are 3 percent. Nearly 40 percent of the registered voters are Boomers are older, with only 37 percent under the age of 41. Among party registration, registered Republicans are 39 percent, followed by registered Unaffiliateds at 34 percent and registered Democrats at 27 percent. 

In terms of fundraising, incumbent Republican Foxx raised over $1.5 million, compared to $17,000 for Parrish at the mid-point of the summer. 

Again, it would take a pretty sizeable tsunami to move this district into a competitive nature, and even then, the dynamics are still favorable to the Republicans. 

Competitive but Lean Republican Districts

What differentiates the "competitive but lean Republican" congressional districts is the general pattern of the "Big 3" 2020 election results being under 55 percent for the GOP.  Falling into a 45-55 percent range usually means that turnout dynamics, and along with energy and mobilization drives, can move a district from one party to the next, barring substantial solidification of voter party loyalty. These three congressional districts--the 7th, 11th, and 9th--go from 55 to 53 percent GOP, but with the fundamentals at play this year, the lack of a Democratic wave dynamic should keep these districts in the Republican win column. 

The Seventh Congressional District

The Seventh occupies the southeastern corner of the state, emanating from the Wilmington area of the coast inland to Sandhills region of Cumberland and Robeson counties. Like the Fifth, it holds a variety of regional dynamics at play: 31 percent of its voters reside in the GOP-dominated surrounding suburban counties around Wilmington, while 27 percent are in the competitive urban suburbs. Rural county voters make up 23 percent, and urban central city voters are one out of five voters in the district. 

While the regional aspect may point to a more Republican-influenced district, the voter party registration gives a better sense of why the district may be one of the competitive GOP areas: 36 percent of the Seventh's voters are registered Unaffiliated, with 32 percent registered Democrats and 31 percent registered Republicans. But that dynamic is somewhat blunted by two other factors. First, what may help the district's GOP advantage is that 42 percent of voters are Boomer or older, compared to the state's 36 percent. The Cook Political Report gives the district a +8 for the Republicans. 

The second factor could be the district's racial-ethnic composition, being two-thirds White non-Hispanic and only 17 percent Black/African American and 2 percent Hispanic/Latino. It is likely the case that among White registered Democrats, especially in the rural parts of the district, they are more likely Republican-leaning voters. One other important racial component: the district is the second highest in North Carolina of "all other races," thanks in large part to the Lumbee Indians of Robeson County, which is making an apparent partisan realignment from Democratic to Republican voting patterns. 

The 2022 election may be a good test of how much the Lumbee's have moved politically, as one of their own, Charles Graham, is the Democratic candidate challenging incumbent Republican David Rouser. Rouzer, who lost his first attempt at the congressional seat by only 655 votes in 2012, took the seat in the 2014 election and has held it ever since. In terms of fundraising, this has been a fairly even contest at the mid-point of the summer, with Rouzer raising a little under $1 million compared to Graham's $236,000. However, even with the Big 3 dynamics giving it a competitive nature for the Republicans, it should be a seat that continues Rouzer's win streak come November. 

The Eleventh Congressional District

North Carolina's Eleventh Congressional District was home to one of the nation's most highly anticipated and bitter campaigns, but it's not the November general election, but rather the past May primary for the Republican nomination. The national notoriety that now defeated Republican Madison Cawthorn gained during his two years in office had a lot of eyes watching the May primary contest, where state senator Chuck Edwards defeated the sitting incumbent US Representative to secure the GOP nomination. 

But as eyes turn to November, the likelihood is that that general contest will be one of another Republican serving the mountains of North Carolina. While the Democratic candidate Jasmine Beach-Ferrara is seeking to make this a competitive contest, the Republican fundamentals in the Eleventh point to a 54 percent "Big 3" election classification. Granted, registered Unaffiliated voters make up 40 percent of the district (second in the state only to the Second at 42 percent Unaffiliated), the Eleventh is 86 percent White non-Hispanic, with all other racial-ethnic groups in single digits. The district does have liberal Asheville within it, but that deep blue is surrounded by deep red suburbs and rural areas: only 13 percent of the voters reside in urban central city Asheville, while 37 percent are in rural counties, 27 percent in surrounding suburban counties, and 23 percent in urban suburbs (inside Buncombe County but outside of Asheville city limits). 

In addition, 44 percent of the voters are in the oldest generational cohorts (Boomers, Silent, and Greatest), reflecting the 'retirement' environment that the mountain areas have been attracting for some time. The Cook Political Report gives NC's Eleventh District a rating of Republican +8. In terms of mid-summer fundraising, both Edwards and Beach-Ferrara had significant war chest of money at that point, with Edwards raising $1.1 million and Beach-Ferrara at $1.8 million.  

While Beach-Ferrara is a Buncombe County Commissioner and should draw heavily from her Asheville political base, the Republican strongholds outside of Asheville should deliver Edwards his first term in the U.S. House of Representatives and keep the district in GOP hands. 

The Ninth Congressional District 

Finally, potentially the most competitive Republican district is NC's Ninth, which shifted to the east from its traditional mooring in the Charlotte/Mecklenburg County suburbs region into a more Sandhills-centered district. The district, even with a geographic shift, keeps its Republican +6 PVI from the Cook Political Report from its previous configuration.

The "Big 3" 2020 election results point to a 53/47 Republican advantage in the Ninth, which covers Randolph and Chatham counties down to the South Carolina border and the eastern part of Richmond County and all of Scotland County. The party registration is almost evenly split among the three major groups: 35 percent are registered Unaffiliated, a third are registered Democrats, and 32 percent are registered Republicans. The Ninth has one of the lowest White non-Hispanic voter populations held by a Republican, at 60 percent, with 23 percent being Black/African American, 5 percent Hispanic/Latino, and 5 percent all other races (unknown/unreported race-ethnicity is 8 percent). 

The district's generational distribution is also one of the closest to the state patterns: 39 percent of its voters are under the age of 41 (Millennials and Generation Z), while 28 percent are Boomer, 24 percent are Gen X, and 9 percent are Greatest/Silent generations. 

However, the comparison to the state's dynamics ends there, especially when it comes to viewing the regional composition of the Ninth. The largest block of voters reside in surrounding suburban counties (45 percent), while another 29 percent are in rural counties. Only a quarter (22 percent in urban central cities and 4 percent in urban suburbs) are in urbanized areas. 

As noted above, Republican Congressman Richard Hudson is now running for the Ninth, having represented the Eighth District prior to 2022's revision of the congressional map. Having won election in 2012 to the U.S. House, Hudson is being challenged by Democrat Ben Clark, a former state senator who sought to garner a Sandhills-based congressional district. At the summer mid-point, Hudson had reported a war chest of $2.8 million, with no report given for Clark. If Democrats are to keep control of their majority in the U.S. House, this district is one that needs to be in their win column. But with a Republican incumbent seeking re-election in a Republican-advantage district, the fundamentals will likely point to Hudson continuing another term in the U.S. House. 

Safe Democratic Districts:

The Second Congressional District

This district is located entirely within the north half of Wake County, which is Raleigh and its northern suburbs. This is a shift from its previous location in the southern half of Wake County. It has the highest percentage of Unaffiliated voters in North Carolina at 42% and the third-lowest percentage of registered Republican voters (beat only by the other two districts listed as safely Democratic). It is also 67% urban, which is traditionally a Democratic stronghold. The remaining third of the district is suburban, which did well for former President Trump in 2016 but better for President Biden in 2020. A full 10% of voters do not list race or ethnicity in this district– the highest in the state– which makes analysis of the racial dynamics of this race tricky.

The seat is currently held by Deborah Ross, who previously ran for US Senate against Richard Burr in 2016. She is running for reelection against Republican Christine Villaverde, a political newcomer who has worked in law enforcement and emergency management for the state of North Carolina. Ross has an enormous advantage in fundraising– as of June, she had raised over $1.5 million– while Villaverde has raised only $96,000. Ross has zeroed in on the US Supreme Court in her campaign, helping pass legislation earlier this year that would require justices to disclose stock trades and regularly talking about the Dobbs decision that overturned Roe v. Wade. Villaverde has a generic statement about being pro-life and discusses her opposition to mask and vaccine mandates on her website, but her primary issue is public safety and crime, a regular talking point for Republican candidates in this election cycle. Villaverde is also another candidate in North Carolina who lives outside the district she is running to represent; she lives in the 13th district, about 20 miles away from the 2nd.

Cook PVI has NC-2 as D+12. This is slightly less favorable to Democrats than in 2021, but still a solidly Democratic seat that we expect Ross to win handily.

The Fourth Congressional District

This district is located in the northwest part of the Triangle area, encompassing Durham, Chapel Hill, and Burlington all the way north to Roxboro. It used to include more areas on the north, east, and southwest of Raleigh, but it is still 87% urban or suburban. Also, no matter whether you use the old lines or the new lines, this district goes 66% for President Biden. It has been represented by Democrat David Price since 1988, except for one term from 1994-1996 (remember, the 1994 elections were a sweep for Republicans across the country). He chose to retire at the end of the current term, so this seat is open.

Democrat Valerie Foushee is running to replace him after beating a crowded Democratic field that included a Durham County Commissioner and a former pop star. She has served in the North Carolina State Senate in District 23, which overlaps well with NC-4, since 2013, and has also served in the North Carolina State House, the Orange County Board of Commissioners, and the Chapel Hill-Carrboro City School Board. Her opponent will be Republican Courtney Geels, a nurse who is running to “heal our nation” and is against health care mandates. She became involved in politics during the 2020 election and became connected to the NC GOP through her husband, who is acquainted with former White House Chief of Staff and NC-11 Representative Mark Meadows. Foushee has raised over $960,000 as of June while Geels has raised a little over $150,000.  

Cook PVI has NC-4 as D+16, which is one point more favorable to Democrats than in 2021. This is most likely because NC-4 is only 18% registered Republican, which is the lowest percentage of any congressional district in the state. It would be very surprising if Foushee lost this race given its partisan makeup and history.

The Twelfth Congressional District

This district is located just north of the new 14th district, covering the northern half of Mecklenburg County and the western half of Cabarrus County. This is a slight shift north for the district, which used to encompass more to the south and west of Charlotte. In fact, the moving district lines have moved its current representative, Democrat Alma Adams, out of the district (her home is now in NC-14). 

Adams is still running for reelection, though, and her opponent is Republican Tyler Lee, a businessman and real estate developer. She has raised about $680,000 as of June, while Lee has raised a little over $100,000, making this the “cheapest” congressional race in the state. Adams has reproductive rights front and center on the issues page of her website, and she was arrested in July for protesting the Dobbs decision at the Supreme Court. Lee, on the other hand, is silent on the issue of abortion, and instead emphasizes the economy, immigration, and foreign policy. He has not shied away from association with former President Trump, Florida governor Ron DeSantis, and Ted Budd, who is the Republican candidate for US Senate in this election cycle, as many other Republican candidates have.

Cook PVI has NC-12 as D+13, which is six points less favorable to Democrats than in 2021 but still very safe. The district is 44% registered Democrat, the third highest percentage in the state, and 36% of its voters are Black, the second highest in the state. This district is also second place in terms of the number of Millennial voters, who as we have pointed out tend to vote Democratic. All of these statistics forecast a fairly easy win for Adams. Additionally, the district is over 50% women, and 50% of them are registered Democrats. A further 30% of women in NC-12 are Unaffiliated. Adams is likely hoping that her focus on abortion will help her with all of these women.

Likely Democratic Districts:

The First Congressional District

This district is in the northeastern part of the state, with Rocky Mount, Wilson, and part of Greenville as its primary cities. It has been represented by a Democrat since 1883, and by G.K. Butterfield since 2004. This district has the highest percentage of Black North Carolinians in the state, and Black voters are historically a strong voting bloc for the Democrats. This balances the fact that the district is nearly half rural counties, which tend to favor Republicans. President Biden carried this district by 9 points in 2020, but this is much lower than previous Democratic presidential candidates: Clinton won the district by a whopping 37 points only 4 years earlier, and Obama won the district by similarly high numbers in 2008 and 2012.

Butterfield declined to run for reelection, so this seat is open. The Republican candidate, Sandy Smith, lost to Butterfield by 8.4% in 2020. Her Democratic opponent is Don Davis, who has been serving in the North Carolina State Senate representing District 5 since 2013. This district does not quite overlap with NC-1– it’s about half NC-1 and half NC-3, which is safely Republican– which means Davis will have to increase his name recognition in a large portion of NC-1. Additionally, as of June he had only raised a little over $900,000 compared to Smith’s $1.4 million.  On the other side, Smith proudly proclaims her allegiance to former President Trump on her campaign website, along with mentioning her pro-life views, and both of these could work against her given Trump’s legal problems and the strong public backlash to the Dobbs decision.

Cook PVI has NC-1 as D+2, which is very slightly less favorable to Democrats than in 2021. However, we classify this district as Likely Democrat given its history and high number of registered Democratic voters (48%).

The Sixth Congressional District

The Sixth district used to be primarily the cities of Winston-Salem and Greensboro, but in the latest round of redistricting it lost Winston-Salem and grew north to include all of Rockingham County and most of Caswell County. A Republican stronghold since 1984, it elected a Democrat, Kathy Manning, in 2020 with over 60% of the vote– higher than President Biden achieved in the district. She is running for reelection, and her opponents include Republican Christian Castelli and Libertarian candidate Thomas Watercott. Castelli won the Republican primary narrowly over Joseph Lee Haywood, who ran against Manning in 2020.

Republicans have targeted this district as a potential flip back to their side, and the National Republican Congressional Committee has added Castelli to its list of “Young Guns” who get assistance from them with campaigning. However, Castelli is another NC Republican candidate who scrubbed his website of mentions of being anti-abortion and does not live in the district, both of which have earned him negative press. Additionally, as of the end of June Castelli only has 8.6% of the funds Manning has. Watercott has reported no donations or disbursements as of June.

Cook PVI has NC-6 as D+4, which is very slightly less favorable to Democrats than in 2021. 40% of the district is registered Democrat, followed by 33% Unaffiliated and 27% Republican. This is one of the rare districts where more men are registered Democrat than the other two affiliations. Between that and the fact that a majority of the district is urban (59%) and there is a high percentage of Black voters (31%), we rate this seat as Likely Democrat.

The Fourteenth Congressional District- the newborn!

Our newest district contains the lower half of Charlotte and part of Gaston County. It was drawn by a 3-judge panel in February of this year after the North Carolina Supreme Court threw out the General Assembly’s congressional map for “extreme partisan gerrymandering.” It is over two-thirds urban and 25% exurban, and has the highest percentage of Millennials in the state (33%). In 2021, Millennials became the largest voting bloc in the United States, and so far they tend to favor Democrats.

Jeff Jackson, who has served in the North Carolina State Senate since 2014, is running as the Democratic candidate. He had originally planned to run for the US Senate seat that Richard Burr is vacating, but in December 2021 he decided to suspend that campaign and endorse Cheri Beasley instead. Once the new maps were announced in February of this year, he decided to run to represent this district. That US Senate run helped bolster his coffers, though, and as of June he had raised over $4.3 million, by far the largest amount of any congressional candidate in North Carolina. His Republican opponent, Pat Harrigan, has raised less than $400,000, $50,000 of which was a loan from himself.

Jackson is extremely active on social media, and one of his videos posted after the leak of the Dobbs decision gained over 12,000 views. He is known in the state for his repeated bills to close a loophole in North Carolina law that did not allow someone to revoke consent during sexual activity; the bill closing the loophole was passed and signed in 2019 after four years of Jackson’s efforts. He believes these activities will help him win women voters, who make up 52% of the district. Harrigan, on the other hand, has tried his best to distance himself from former President Trump, who he believes the 2020 election was a referendum on. Instead, he’s counting on Unaffiliated and wealthy voters to be angry about some of President Biden’s policies, including the botched withdrawal from Afghanistan and high prices at the grocery store and gas pump.

Cook PVI has NC-14 as D+6. The plurality of voters in this district is Unaffiliated (38%), followed by Democrats (35%) and Republicans (27%). Between Jackson’s high name recognition, his much higher funds, and the demographics of this district, we think NC-14 is very Likely Democrat. 

The Most Competitive (but Leans Democratic) District in North Carolina

The North Carolina Thirteenth Congressional District was changed substantially in the latest round of redistricting. It used to be located in the center of the state, a somewhat rural district that stretched between the three major metros of North Carolina. For the upcoming election, it will cover the southern edge of Raleigh and its southern suburbs like Clayton, Fuquay-Varina, and further southeast to Goldsboro. Therefore, the new 13th is a majority urban suburban and exurban county (80%). These regions went for Biden in the 2020 election, with exurban areas showing the largest growth for Democrats over the 2016 election.

Additionally, suburban women have reported that they are more likely to vote for a Democrat than a Republican this cycle almost entirely because of the Dobbs decision released earlier this year that overturned Roe v. Wade, which is another reason we think this seat is competitive. Its current officeholder, Ted Budd, is running for US Senate, so the seat is technically open, and the Republican candidate, Bo Hines, made headlines for deleting his staunchly pro-life views from his campaign website. His opponent, Democrat Wiley Nickel, is bringing up Hines’ abortion views every chance he gets in hopes of motivating these suburban and exurban women to turn out to vote. At the same time, Nickel does not actually live in the 13th district– he lives in the 2nd district about 5 miles away– while Hines moved into the 13th district earlier this year. As of June, Hines and Nickel have both raised around $1.7 million for this race– a sign of how close many are expecting this race to be– but Hines has only one-fifth of the cash on hand that Nickel has.

The district is pretty evenly divided between Democrats, Republicans, and Unaffiliated voters, with each group having roughly one-third of the registered voters in the district. The highest is Unaffiliated voters at 37% and the lowest is Republican voters at 30%. Cook PVI has NC-13 as R+2, but the women in the district favor Democrats and more men in the district are Unaffiliated than registered with a party, which we believe gives the Democrats the edge. 

In the end, the North Carolina congressional delegation for the new Congress, to be sworn in on January 3, 2023, should be a fairly evenly-divided group: the potential is there for a perfect 7-7 split, or a slight Republican advantage of an 8-6 delegation, all dependent upon the outcome of the highly competitive Thirteenth Congressional District contest. 

As we began this analysis, however, don't get comfortable with this map or these current district configurations and political dynamics: in all likelihood, the North Carolina General Assembly will have its say, once again, in the redistricting process for these congressional districts sometime in 2023. 

And thus a new map will once again continue the Old North State's tradition of multiple maps in a single redistricting decade. 


Dr. Whitney Ross Manzo is an associate professor of political science at Meredith College, where she is also the assistant director of the Meredith Poll. She tweets at @whitneymnz.

Dr. Michael Bitzer holds the Leonard Chair of Political Science at Catawba College where he is a professor of politics and history. He tweets at @BowTiePolitics