Democrats’ Dreams Turn to Dust as Adjudicated Redistricting Maps Set the Stage for Large Republican Gains in 2022

The Democratic Party’s hopes of gaining seats from redistricting have been crushed as court decisions and an increasingly aggressive GOP produced more Republican-friendly maps.

Democrats were initially optimistic that they could mitigate projected midterm losses in the House when it appeared they were poised to score wins in the redistricting process. However, the party’s hopes have been dashed after key losses in major states erased their redistricting advantage.

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Louisiana’s Republican Legislature Overrides Democrat Gov. John Bel Edwards Veto of Redistricting Plan

John Bel Edwards

Louisiana’s Republican-controlled legislature voted to override Democratic Gov. John Bel Edwards’s veto of the congressional redistricting plan they passed in mid-February.

The new congressional maps will maintain the partisan makeup status quo of the the state’s delegation to the United States House of Representatives.

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New Hampshire State Senate Set to Vote on House-Passed Redistricting Proposal

New Hampshire State Capitol

The New Hampshire State Senate is set to vote on the House-approved redistricting plan on Thursday.

New Hampshire is one of four remaining states that have yet to complete their congressional redistricting process. The others are Louisiana, Florida, and Missouri.

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Democrats Currently Lead in National Redistricting Efforts with Four States Still Completing Process

Democrats currently have the lead in redistricting efforts with four states still working on new maps.

Forty states, 46 if the states that have one congressional district are included, have finished the process of drawing new maps for U.S. House of Representatives districts. Only Florida, Missouri, Louisiana, and New Hampshire have yet to finish their redistricting process.

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Wisconsin Republicans File Lawsuit to Block New Redistricting Maps

Republicans in the Wisconsin Legislature officially filed a lawsuit to the U.S. Supreme Court, claiming the maps proposed by Governor Evers and selected by the Wisconsin Supreme are unconstitutional.

According to the lawsuit, the boundaries selected by the state Supreme Court are a racial gerrymander.

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Wisconsin Supreme Court Selects Redistricting Maps Proposed by Governor Evers

Tony Evers

The Wisconsin Supreme Court adopted a redistricting proposal offered by Governor Tony Evers, a move less favorable to Republicans.

The ruling was issued on a razor-thin margin, as swing Justice Brian Hagedorn wrote the opinion in the 4 to 3 decision. According to the decision, the justices selected the map by Evers because it proposed “the map with the least change.”

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New York Officially Adopts New Congressional Lines that Could Axe Half the GOP Delegation

Democratic New York Gov. Kathy Hochul late Thursday signed a new congressional map into law that could eliminate half of the state’s Republicans in the House.

The signing, reported by the Associated Press, comes just days after the state legislature advanced the map on near party lines. The map gives Democrats an advantage in 22 of the state’s 26 seats.

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Analysis: States Where Unelected Bureaucrats Took over Redistricting Experienced Difficulties

In Michigan, the state’s civil rights agency said proposed maps of legislative districts “do not measure up to the requirements of the law.” In Pennsylvania, Republican lawmakers complained about an “extreme partisan gerrymander.” And in Virginia, incumbents and potential challengers scrambled to work with proposed district maps.

In theory, new bureaucracies to draw up maps for congressional and legislative districts were supposed to save democracy from politics and block the practice of gerrymandering.

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Pennsylvania House Committee Releases Public-Drawn Congressional Redistricting Map

The Pennsylvania House State Government Committee has unveiled a preliminary map for new congressional districts, selected from one of 19 submitted by the public.

Rep. Seth Grove, R-York, chair of the State Government Committee, said a map submitted by Lehigh County resident Amanda Holt was selected because it was crafted without political influence, met constitutional standards and limited splits of townships and municipalities, among other factors.

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North Carolina Adopts New Congressional Map That Favors Republicans

The North Carolina General Assembly on Thursday finalized the state’s new U.S. House map that gives Republicans a distinct advantage over Democrats.

The map creates 10 safe Republican seats, three safe Democratic seats and one competitive seat, up from the current 8-5 map now. North Carolina is the only state where the legislature has full control over the redistricting process, meaning that the new lines can skirt what would be an all but certain veto from Democratic Gov. Roy Cooper and go into effect.

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Pennsylvania Bill Would Clarify That Courts Can’t Redraw Electoral Maps, as State Supreme Court Did in 2018

Legislation currently in the works in the Pennsylvania General Assembly would spell out two rules for redistricting in the Keystone State: Elections cannot legally take place in outdated districts and courts can’t create new districts themselves.

In Feb. 2018, the Democrat-controlled Pennsylvania Supreme Court not only struck down Pennsylvania’s congressional maps as unconstitutionally gerrymandered, it reimposed new maps created with no input from the legislature, something state law does not grant the court the right to do. The new maps strongly favored the Democrats’ electoral prospects.

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