How the Trump era made redistricting more complicated
April 18, 2021. Summarized by summa-bot.
Compression ratio: 19.5%. 2 min read.
US President Donald Trump addresses supoorters during a Make America Great Again rally as he campaigns at Erie International Airport in Erie, Pennsylvania, October 20, 2020. (Photo by SAUL LOEB / AFP) (Photo by SAUL LOEB/AFP via Getty Images)
The political upheaval caused by the rise of former President Donald Trump has forced party operatives and elected officials tasked with laying out the nation's congressional districts for the next decade to determine whether those shifts were aberrations or signs of more lasting changes.
Republicans and Democrats charged with overseeing the redistricting process in states across the country now have to evaluate these changes as they embark on making once-in-a-decade adjustments to the districts that go a long way to determining the makeup -- and control -- of the House of Representatives.
For those tasked with redistricting, especially in states with some political control, the pressure to get these calculations right is immense, given that the process could determine control of the House of Representatives for years to come.
While an independent commission determines Arizona's districts, the process in Texas, Florida and North Carolina are all guided by their respective state legislature -- which are all controlled by Republicans.
In New Mexico, where Democrats control both the state legislature and governor's mansion, the party is expected to redraw the state's 2nd Congressional District, a district that is currently Republican leaning and represented by Republican Yvette Herrell.
And in places like Ohio, a state that demographers expect will lose a congressional seat, Republicans are expected to use their near total control of the redistricting process to ensure that the congressional district does not come from their column.
The party has the most control of the process in states like Georgia, Texas and Florida, he said, but it is more difficult to gerrymander in those states without exposing the state to race based claims.
Democrats over the last decade have grown more focused on redistricting and gerrymandering and this year they are most focused on states where Republicans are not only in control but are gaining the power that come with redrawing another seat.
More aggressive actions by Democrats, along with changes in states to make the redistricting process less partisan, have made it harder for Republicans to protect their past redistricting work in some states.