From the Congressional Research Service:
Another federal requirement comes from Section 2 of the Voting Rights Act (VRA), as amended, which prohibits states or political subdivisions from imposing any voting qualification, practice, or procedure that results in denial or abridgement of the right to vote based on race, color, or membership in a language minority.
Under the VRA, states cannot draw district maps that have the effect of reducing, or diluting, minority voting strength.
Last night the lines of Raleigh’s Council districts were redrawn to reduce District B’s minority population from 62% to 54%. This was done by moving 55,000 people (nearly 12% of Raleigh’s population) of whom 54% are minority – even though Raleigh is predominantly white. In District B 70% of the people redistricted were minority.
Why was the majority that were redistricted minorities? Why were Raleigh’s minority neighborhoods the ones that were targeted for redistricting? Why wasn’t an option developed that did not dilute the minority vote in District B?