While the nation has been focused on President-elect Donald Trump’s official Electoral College win on Monday, Seth Meyers decided to focus on some dirty politics going on in North Carolina.
While the state went to Trump, North Carolina elected a Democrat for governor, Roy Cooper. In response, the Republican-leaning legislature have been busy passing laws that limit the incoming governor’s power before he can take office.
“By the rules of our electoral system, Donald Trump won, and our democracy depends on accepting the legitimacy of our opponents and the votes of people who disagree with us,” NBC’s “Late Night” host said on Monday’s show, “which is why what happened last week in North Carolina is so troubling.”
Last Wednesday, the North Carolina legislature held a special session to vote on various laws that would reduce the gubernatorial powers. They included limiting the governor’s control over state and county election boards and drastically reducing the 1,500 state employees who serve the governor to 300.
But all that was only made possible by what a court called “racial gerrymandering,” a practice where electoral boundaries are manipulated to favour one party or class along racial lines.
“Basically, they drew some districts to group as many African-American voters as possible to dil lute their political power,” Meyers explained, before showing North Carolina’s congressional map.
“Take a look at District 12,” the host continued “It’s so weirdly shaped you can’t even fit the 12 in it. It looks like a Rorschach test. What do you see in this shape? I don’t know, it’s either a dragon or 300 years of institutional racism.”
Protestors of the GOP power grab in North Carolina have been descending on the state capital asking the senate to hear them out. Many have been arrested while holding the peaceful protests.
“This is the time when we take stock of all the things we take for granted,” Meyers said, “things like living in a stable, healthy democracy. But democracy isn’t something that succeeds on its own. If it’s going to survive, we have to fight for it.”
Watch Meyers explain why we should care about the GOP power grab in North Carolina below:
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