Despite prognostications of doom, redistricting outside Florida hasn’t yet devastated the Democrats as much as feared. While on the surface, the GOP has gained ground, in many cases it’s a situation where marginal seats recently won by Republicans in 2020 are being solidified for the GOP in redistricting. Additionally, several GOP-led states have run into legal trouble with their reapportionment maps.
Court rulings that have thrown out hyper-partisan gerrymanders in Ohio and North Carolina (a state where the Governor does not have a role in redistricting and much like 2012 when a Democratic Governor was helpless to stop the GOP legislature, bad maps were passed, but this time the courts acted) as well as surprisingly handed the Democrats the potential of winning another seat in Alabama.
The North Carolina Supreme Court has given the legislature until February 18, to draw new maps. North Carolina has been the scene of continued court battles and shifting lines this past decade, as a Republican-led legislature has made every effort to draw lines that maximize partisan gains in what is effectively a very purple state.
In Louisiana, A Democratic Governor is indicating he may use his veto power and here in Florida as we know, the Governor and State House’s desire for a hyper-partisan map is not shared in the State Senate.
Meanwhile, in Michigan a court upheld the maps drawn by an independent redistricting commission that maintain the current edge the GOP enjoys.
In Tennessee, Republican lawmakers have eliminated the Nashville-based Democratic district long held by Congressman Jim Cooper who has opted to retire. Tennessee will be down to one Democrat in its delegation after 2022 if the maps hold.
The Republicans have maximized their advantage in drawing a map with a grand total of one competitive seat in Texas. Similarly, in Illinois leaders have drawn a map that heavily favors Democrats and draws several Republican incumbents into districts together. Both these states will face court scrutiny for what appears to be partisan plans.
In New Hampshire and Maine, slight tweaks in lines appear to favor the GOP, while in New Jersey and Maryland no partisan shift is likely to take place BUT, Democrats would be in a position to potentially sweep both states in a wave year, with the exception of a single NJ district.
Arizona, a state which has been in the news often recently has drawn what is effectively a GOP gerrymander.
New York( who have sent a map to the Governor that helps Democrats), Pennsylvania and Florida are biggest states on the clock now.
We will keep readers posted of developments in other states during this reapportionment year.