DURHAM, NC — Rep. Tricia Cotham, of Charlotte, announced today that she is switching her party affiliation from Democratic to Republican, subverting the will of the people in her district who voted mere months ago for a lawmaker who purported to represent their interests and values at the State House.
“It is bad enough that North Carolinians have spent the better part of the last decade fighting unlawful attempts by politicians to pick their preferred voters using discriminatory gerrymanders,” said Jeff Loperfido, Interim Chief Counsel for Voting Rights at Southern Coalition for Social Justice (SCSJ). “Apparently if you can’t rig the game by picking your voters, the next best strategy is lying to the faces of the ones you are stuck with. This is just another example of the outright disdain some politicians in our state have for the people who put them in office.”
SCSJ has been on the front lines of protecting North Carolinians from overt voter suppression tactics across the South. This is especially true in North Carolina, where Republican legislative leadership has launched repeated assaults on individuals’ fundamental right to vote and have their voices heard — including most recently asking our state Supreme Court to toss precedent and give them unfettered power to redistrict as they see fit regardless of which voters are harmed in the process. Cotham’s move, which seemingly secures a veto-proof Republican super-majority, will only further embolden Legislative leaders as they seek to push their anti-democratic agenda.
Regardless of the party involved or the party in power, SCSJ will continue to fight for what is just, fair and constitutional for all voters.
The Southern Coalition for Social Justice, founded in 2007, partners with communities of color and economically disadvantaged communities in the South to defend and advance their political, social, and economic rights through the combination of legal advocacy, research, organizing and communications. Learn more at southerncoalition.org and follow our work on Twitter and Facebook.