In just a few short months, we guess, Wake County voters will go to the polls to vote on... well, we don’t know what.
We know seats on the school board and the Wake County board of commissioners are open. Depending on who you talk to, they should all be up for election, or just a few of them should be.
It would be oversimplification to say that the disconnect is a result of the recent U.S. Appeals Court ruling which held that the seats were not constitutional. But a deeper examination would reveal that state legislators meddled in a matter that, well, didn’t involve them when they redrew Wake County’s school board and county commissioners’ districts.
State legislators complain frequently that the federal government adopts and enforces rules all over the country that may not be well suited for their state.
“We know our state better than the feds do,” comes the hue and cry from legislators who find some unpleasant mandate dropped upon them.
That same argument applies here. Wake County’s election maps were just fine before legislators – including some from Dare County and Mitchell County on opposite ends of the state – presumed to know what was best for Wake County voters in their own local elections.
Legislators will argue this point until they are blue in the face, though no one will believe them: the motivation for the Republican-led legislature to make the changes was to make it more difficult for Democrats to win elected office. That’s never a good reason to interfere with local matters.
And the Fourth District Court of Appeals has apparently agreed.
Now, thanks to our state legislators, we aren’t sure what seats we will vote on this fall. It’s going to be hard to know who’s running in what district. And that confusion will make it even more difficult for a largely disconnected electorate to make a wise decision on Election Day.