Georgia Senate Releases First Congress Redistribution Map Proposal | Local


ATLANTA – The General Assembly’s special redistribution session doesn’t start until November, but the first map of the redistribution season was released on Monday evening.

Lieutenant Governor Geoff Duncan, who chairs the Georgia Senate, and Senator John Kennedy, chairman of the House Redistribution and Redistribution Committee, presented a proposal for a Congressional district map that would increase the size of districts in the Rural South Georgia to reflect losses in population over the past decade.

The plan drawn up by the Republican Senate majority also appears to target U.S. Representative Lucy McBath, D-Marietta, by moving parts of the 6th Congressional District she represents to heavily Republican areas.

Duncan defended the proposed map as meeting guidelines set by the Senate committee last month.

“This map not only respects the principles of redistribution, but we are proud to present a map that Georgians can be proud of, regardless of their political party,” said the Lieutenant Governor. “Ensuring that all the maps we produce are fair, compact and that they hold communities of interest together will continue to be of the utmost importance. “

Georgian lawmakers redesign the state’s legislative and congressional districts once a decade to account for population changes reflected in the U.S. census. Special redistribution sessions usually take place in late summer, but the process has been delayed this year due to the impact of the coronavirus pandemic on the completion and publication of the census.

Georgia counties south of Interstate 20 would gain huge tracts of land to compensate for population losses since the 2010 census. Federal law requires congressional districts to be virtually equal in population.

The 2nd Congressional District of Southwest Georgia, which now includes only part of Muscogee County, would expand to encompass the entire county, as well as parts of Harris and Houston counties now comprising part of other districts.

But perhaps the most dramatic changes would take place further east, where some districts would essentially swap counties. The 8th Congressional District in the south-central part of the state would add Coffee, Jeff Davis and Wheeler counties while losing Wilkinson and Wheeler counties and parts of Houston and Lowndes counties.

The 10th District would lose northern Columbia County, southern Baldwin County, and all McDuffie and Warren counties, while moving further north to reach Elbert, Jackson, and Madison counties, and absorb the entire county. of Athens-Clarke. Currently, the 10th district does not include the northern part of Athens-Clarke.

The 12th Congressional District, which borders the 10th in the south, would move north to encompass the part of Columbia County it now does not contain as well as all of McDuffie, Jefferson, Washington and Wilkinson counties. At its southern end, the 12 would lose the counties of Coffee, Jeff Davis, Appling and Wheeler.

Democrat McBath captured the 6th Congressional District in the northern suburbs of Atlanta in 2018 after being in Republican hands for decades, then was re-elected last year.

But keeping the seat would become more difficult in 2022 under the Senate map, which would place the entire strongly Republican county of Forsyth in the 6th arrondissement for the first time. The district would retain East Cobb and North Fulton but lose northern DeKalb County.

Likewise, Democratic Rep. Carolyn Bourdeaux could face a new hurdle under the Congress 7th District Senate card proposal. As the district would lose Forsyth County to McBath District, the Republican-dominated 9th Congressional District in North Georgia would plunge into northern Gwinnett County, uncomfortably close and perhaps even including the residence. from Bourdeaux.

Even if the House of Bourdeaux finds itself outside its district, it would still be allowed to stand for re-election next year. Federal law does not require House members to reside in their district.

The special session will begin on November 3 and is expected to run through Thanksgiving week.

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