- Associated Press - Friday, September 15, 2017

RALEIGH, N.C. (AP) - North Carolina’s top elected government attorney is staying out of legal spats over redistricting.

Attorney General Josh Stein said Friday he will delegate oversight of the cases to career lawyers in his office so he can speak out against what he considers illegal partisan gerrymandering.

Stein’s office says his recusal will apply to all gerrymandering litigation against the state. Several lawsuits are pending against legislative and congressional districts drawn by the Republican-led General Assembly.

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Stein says his decision is designed to avoid any questions about the professionalism of the Department of Justice defending the state. He says partisan gerrymandering undermines democracy.

Senate leader Phil Berger and House Speaker Tim Moore said late Friday they still expect Stein to fulfill his attorney general’s oath and vigorously defend the state’s laws.

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