Clyburn Responds to Claims He Collaborated to Gerrymander Districts in South Carolina

( — On Sunday March 31, Democratic South Carolina Congressman James Clyburn appeared on NBC’s Meet the Press with Kristen Welker. Just a day before that, a federal court in South Carolina ruled that the current voting map that was already found discriminatory to black voters and unconstitutional will still be used for this year’s congressional elections in South Carolina as the window for a new decision by the Supreme Court before the election has closed. Welker asked for Clyburn’s response to a 2023 ProPublica report that suggested that he had worked with Republicans to draw that map in order to ensure his district had an extra 30,000 black voters to help secure his power in his district.

Clyburn categorically denied the accusation levied by ProPublica’s report. He said he did offer suggestions for the map when he was asked for his input, but otherwise had nothing to do with the redistricting process. He also refuted claims that the current map makes his district a majority minority district. He asserts that if people check the numbers on his district, it will be made clear that the assessment of his district is untrue.

The panel of federal judges from South Carolina commented in their ruling that, in light of the appeal with the Supreme Court still pending and with no other plans in place, that the election will have to “bend to the practical” so the current contested voting map must be used in the rapidly approaching election. The 2023 ruling ordering the redrawing of the district maps found the state guilty of violating the 14th Amendment’s equal protection clause.

Clyburn seemed frustrated by what he calls misrepresentations regarding the gerrymandering and his alleged participation. He referenced being asked about it by a young woman, who he says was more interested in “making a headline” than in making any headway on the issue. Clyburn has also repeatedly said that even though he did offer his opinion on the redistricting, his advice was absolutely not utilized.

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