Saturday, December 11, 2010

Maryland Redistricting, 7-1 D

 Like in 2001, Democrats hold the trifecta in Maryland again. This means that not only do they control the Governorship, they also control both houses of the state legislature. In 2001, the congressional delegation was 4-4 but Democrats redrew the maps to make a favorable Democratic map that accomplished its goal of removing 2 of the 4 Republican representatives. After 2002, there were no party changes until 2008 when Frank Kratovli (D) ran in the 1st district which contains conservative Baltimore suburbs and the Eastern Shore. He barely won against an extremist candidate. Unfortunately for the Democrats, he lost in 2010 by 13 points. Therefore, the delegation has returned to its original 6-2 Democrats. Maryland has turned more blue though since 2002 due to more African Americans moving into Prince Georges and Charles Counties. Also, Hispanics, Asians and white liberals are moving into Montgomery County and even Frederick County. The Baltimore suburbs are actually trending Republican but that's a different post for a different day.

Still, with Maryland trending Democratic overall, it is now possible to construct a 7-1 Democratic map. I have even seen some 8-0 Democratic maps but some districts are too shaky and can result in a dummymander when Republicans are able to pick up 1,2 or even 3 of those seats. I chose to draw a 7-1 map because I think it is close to what the state legislature will draw. While drawing the map, I made sure the 4th and 7th districts remained majority African American because of the VRA requiring 2 African American majority districts. While drawing the map, I made sure no district except for the Republican 6th fell below 54% Obama. Also, I made sure 6 of the districts were at least 58% for Obama. This map should protect all the Democratic incumbents, one Republican incumbent and create a new district that leans Democratic. Now here are some helpful links:

Maryland's current map:

                                     Statewide map of Maryland
Maryland's 1st Congressional District: Andy Harris (R) (blue)
Partisan Data: Obama 137,680 54%, McCain 113,225 44%
Demographics: 23% African American, 5% Hispanic, 68% White
Old District's Partisan Data: McCain 58%, Obama 40%
Major Cities: Annapolis, Salisbury
Status: Likely Democratic

 This district makes some major changes when I moved conservative suburbs in Harford and Anne Arundel out into other districts such as the 6th and 7th while adding in Democratic Annapolis and some neighborhoods in heavily Democratic Prince Georges County and places in Anne Arundel County such as Odenton which will become more Democratic due to in migration by African Americans. Harris's base is in conservative Harford County which I removed. Frank Kratovli (D), the representative before 2010 of the 1st now has a great shot at retaking this district because of the new Democratic areas in the district. The district's Democratic lean may be overstated due to high Obama turnout in Prince Georges County but as the areas in Anne Arundel keep getting more Democratic, they should offset any drop in turnout. Also, Kratovli tends to over perform in the Eastern Shore so with big margins in Prince Georges and Anne Arundel Counties, he should win here.

                                        Baltimore Area

Maryland's 2nd Congressional District: Dutch Ruppersberger (D) (Green)
Partisan Data: Obama 155,376 58%, McCain 107,691 40%
Demographics: 24% African American, 68% White
Old District's Partisan Data: Obama 60%, McCain 38%
Major Cities: Baltimore, Towson, Dundalk
Status: Safe Democratic

Ruppersberger's district gets less convoluted by losing all of its Anne Arundel County portions and picking up swingy Towson which was originally in the 3rd district. Although the 2nd district retains some Republican suburbs around Edgemere, it still remains Democratic by picking up more Baltimore City neighborhoods. They also help balance out the loss of some heavily Democratic precincts in Randallstown. Ruppersberger should be fine here.

Maryland's 3rd Congressional District: John Sarbanes (D) (Purple)
Partisan Data: Obama 164,297 62%, McCain 96,626 36%
Demographics: 26% African American, 8% Asian, 60% White
Old district's partisan data: Obama 59%, McCain 39%
Major Cities: Randallstown, Columbia, Catonsville
Status: Safe Democratic

I am aware of the fact John Sarbanes does not live in this district but it still contains Democratic Columbia. The district undergoes some major changes though. It retains parts of Baltimore County but loses nearly all of Baltimore City and all of Anne Arundel County. It even picks up some Republican areas in southern Carroll County. Sarbanes is still safe though because his district picks up some heavily African American areas in west Baltimore County, bringing the African American population in the district from 16% to 26%. I am not sure the state legislature will support this district though because in their mind, it may need more of Sarbanes's old district and they may not want to extend this into Montgomery County. Still, this is a safe district for Sarbanes.

                                        Washington Suburbs
Maryland's 4th Congressional District: Donna Edwards (D) (Red)
Partisan Data: Obama 212,819 88%, McCain 27,795 11%
Demographics: 54% African American, 17% Hispanic, 6% Asian, 21% White
Old District's Partisan Data: Obama 85%, McCain 14%
Major Cities: Fort Washington, Chillum, Silver Spring
Status: Safe Democratic

The district remains VRA protected and gets even more Democratic although Edwards was more than safe here already. The district becomes smaller and loses more moderate areas in northern Montgomery County while picking up part of Wheaton in Montgomery County. I would have extended this district out into more swingy areas in Montgomery County but the 3rd district took them for population reasons. I am not sure if the legislature will send Edwards's district to pick up some Republican areas to help protect other incumbents or make a district similar to mine.

Maryland 5th Congressional District: Steny Hoyer (D) (yellow)
Partisan Data: Obama 176,048 66%, McCain 89,006 33%
Demographics: 36% African American, 5% Hispanic, 53% White
Old District's Partisan Data: Obama 66% McCain 33%
Major Cities: St. Charles, Bowie
Status: Safe Democratic

Hoyer's district remains strongly Democratic although retaining Republican St. Mary's, Calvert and Anne Arundel Counties. The Democratic votes in Charles (which is getting even more Democratic due to migration from Prince Georges County,) and Prince Georges County more than counterbalance the Republican areas. The only changes in this district are the addition of Fairland in Montgomery County which leans Democratic and the switching around of some Prince Georges County precincts. Hoyer should be happy with his new district.

                                         West Maryland
Maryland's 6th Congressional District: Roscoe Bartlett (D) Teal
Partisan Data: Obama 105,718 36%, McCain 183,765 62%
Demographics: 5% African American, 90% White
Old District's Partisan Data: Obama 40% McCain 58%
Major Cities: Hagerstown, Bel Air, Cumberland
Status: Safe Republican

This district contains the fast growing red Baltimore suburbs, the D.C suburbs that lean Republican and the older communities in the Appalachian Mountains. At a first glance, it appears that the lines do not change much. Actually, they do change a bit and these changes make the district more Republican by removing most of Frederick which leans Democratic. The district loses a bit of Carroll County to the 3rd district but picks up some conservative Harford County suburbs from the old 1st district. The location affects Bartlett who lives in Frederick (which is mostly in the 8th on this map) but since the new 6th district is so similar to the old one, he will probably run there and win easily (unless Republicans try to teabag him which is possible.)

Maryland's 7th Congressional District: Elijah Cummings (D) Gray
Partisan Data: Obama 193,995 70%, McCain 77,987 28%
Demographics: African American 50%, White 43%
Old District's Partisan Data: Obama 79% McCain 20%
Major Cities: Baltimore, Glen Burnie, South Gate
Status: Safe Democratic

Although the 7th district still is anchored in Baltimore, it swings off in a different direction now. Instead of heading through west Balitmore County to west Howard County, the 7th district heads south into the conservative Anne Arundel County suburbs. It picks up Republican areas such as Glen Burnie which were formerly in the 1st district when it was very Republican. Although there are some precincts there that voted as high as 70% for McCain, precincts in Baltimore City that voted as high as 99% for Obama make this district heavily Democratic. The 50% African American population is a bit low for a VRA district but it should work because almost all of the Democratic primary voters are Democratic. Also, a 70% Obama district is way too high for any Republican to win, even in a good year.

Maryland's 8th Congressional District: Chris Van Hollen (D) light purple
Partisan Data: Obama 173,125 69%, McCain 74,721 30%
Demographics: 12% African American, 14% Hispanic, 13% Asian, 59% White
Old District's Partisan Data: Obama 74% McCain 25%
Major Cities: Bethesda, Frederick, Gaithersburg, Rockville
Status: Safe Democratic

This district gets a bit more Republican. I removed Wheaton from the district as well as the heavily Democratic small part of Prince Georges County which helped Van Hollen beat Connie Morella (R) in 2002. Also, Van Hollen's district heads out into Republican leaning Frederick County but takes up the parts that lean Democratic such as the City of Frederick. These changes bring down the Obama percentage from 74% to 69%. Van Hollen will probably want a safer district but Montgomery County has grown much more Democratic since the 90's when it elected Morella. Frederick County is getting more Democratic too so Van Hollen should have no problems.

Do you have any ideas for redistrcting Maryland? Please feel free to share your thoughts.

1 comment:

Anonymous said...

I really like your blog.. very nice colors
& theme. Did you create this website yourself or did you hire someone to do it for you?
Plz answer back as I'm looking to create my own blog and would like to know where u got this from. thanks a lot
Feel free to surf my webpage : GFI Norte