If you aren’t confused about the schedule for the 2022 election, you are most likely in a tiny minority.
Four rulings from three different courts in the past week have pretty much everybody shaking their heads.
First, on Dec. 3, a panel made up of three Superior Court judges ruled that the filing for the March 8, 2022 primary could take place as scheduled beginning on Monday, Dec. 6 at noon.
Then, a three judge Court of Appeals panel ruled at 11:37 a.m. on Monday, Dec. 6 that filing was delayed for the 14 congressional races and all the state House and state Senate races, but filing for other offices could continue as scheduled.
Then, on the evening of Monday, Dec. 6, the full Court of Appeals ruled that filing could go forward in all races including the 14 congressional races and the state House and Senate seats.
So, on Tuesday, Dec. 7 and Wednesday, Dec. 8, filing for the March 8 primary was open for all the races on the ballot.
Then, after filing closed for the day on Wednesday, Dec. 8, the North Carolina Supreme Court delayed filing in all races and postponed the March 8 primary to May 17.
When filing will be held for the May 17 primary has not been determined and, according to the NC Supreme Court ruling, those dates will be set by the trial court hearing the lawsuits challenging the redistricting that was passed by the North Carolina General Assembly. The trial court is ordered to hear the case and issue a ruling by Jan. 11, 2022. After that ruling the parties have two days to file an appeal.
The North Carolina General Assembly has a Republican majority, as does the NC Court of Appeals that ruled that the filing for all offices be reinstated.
The North Carolina Supreme Court has a 4-to-3 Democratic majority.
Adding further confusion for those in Greensboro is the fact that after the now cancelled March 8 primary, the Greensboro City Council general election was to be held on the same day as the statewide runoff primary, which was either going to be on April 26 or May 17 depending on whether there was a runoff in one of the 14 congressional races or the US Senate race.
The North Carolina Supreme Court delayed the primary to May 17, but the ruling was silent on when the runoff primary would be held. So currently, according to the latest ruling from the North Carolina Supreme Court, the date of the Greensboro City Council general election is unknown.
However, those who filed during the three days filing was open do not have to refile to run in the May 17 primary.