United States District Court, District of Columbia
June 27, 2002
NORTH CAROLINA STATE BOARD OF ELECTIONS, PLAINTIFF, ASHLEY STEPHENSON, LEO DAUGHTREY, PATRICK BALLANTINE, ART POPE, AND BILL COBEY, PLAINTIFF-INTERVENORS
UNITED STATES AND JOHN ASHCROFT, AS ATTORNEY GENERAL OF THE UNITED STATES, DEFENDANTS, MARC BASNIGHT AND JAMES BLACK, DEFENDANT-INTERVENORS AND COUNTERCLAIMANTS, LINDA SAMPLE, DEFENDANT-INTERVENORS.
David S. Tatel, United States Circuit Judge, Louis F. Oberdorfer, United
States District Judge, Gladys Kessler, United States District Judge.
The opinion of the court was delivered by: Per Curiam.
Before us for decision is the Counterclaimants' Emergency Motion for
Injunctive Relief. The record presently does not persuade us that there
is a "substantial likelihood," CityFed Fin. Corp. v. Office of Thrift
Supervision, 58 F.3d 738, 746 (D.C. Cir. 1995), that the Plaintiff, the
North Carolina State Board of Elections ("the Board"), would implement
the state court's interim redistricting plan unless and until it is
precleared by either the Department of Justice or by this Court.
Accordingly, the Counterclaimants are not presently threatened by
In the present circumstances, it is unnecessary for us to determine
whether we have jurisdiction at this time with respect to the precleared
General Assembly's 2001 plan. The Counterclaimants have an adequate
remedy before two three-judge panels convened in the United States
District Court for the Eastern District of North Carolina, where two
parallel cases are pending. See Sample v. Jenkins, No. 02-CV-383
(E.D.N.C. filed June 13, 2002); Foreman v. Bartlett, No. 01-CV-166
(E.D.N.C. filed Nov. 13, 2001). The Counterclaimants and individual
members of the Board are already parties in both of those actions.
Finally, the Department of Justice, a defendant here, represents that
it expects to complete its consideration of the state court's interim
plan by the week of July 8, 2002. In reliance on this representation, we
conclude that, assuming (without deciding) that the elimination of
primary runoffs during the 2002 election cycle would be retrogressive, and
further assuming that, although there might not be time for a runoff if
the Board followed its traditional election schedule, the Eastern
District of North Carolina is the forum with unambiguous authority to
order the Board to adjust the primary election schedule to include a
Accordingly, after consideration of the comprehensive submissions
of the parties and the extensive oral arguments, and for reasons to be
more fully stated in a memorandum
to be filed, the Counterclaimants' Emergency Motion for Injunctive Relief
is denied, without prejudice.
It is so ORDERED.
© 1992-2003 VersusLaw Inc.