Nerd alert: The new Congress card has been removed: click here to take a look.
A big point to remember: a reconfigured 2nd congressional district would favor the Democrats and house two incumbents, the Democratic representative of the United States. Joe Negused, de Lafayette, and Republican US Rep. Lauren Boebert Garfield County.
We’ll follow up on Tuesday after the holiday weekend, but here are some quick observations:
- Quarter 1: Denver continues to comprise most of this district, with some from Arapahoe County. It would continue to be a safe Democratic district for the Republic of the United States. Diana DeGette.
- Quarter 2: This district includes much of Boulder and Larimer counties and even part of Weld County, then extends west to the Utah border. It is said to have a Hispanic population of almost 28%.
- Quarter 3: Pueblo and Mesa counties dominate this district, which also includes Durango, the San Luis Valley, and Eagle and Pitkin counties. The Hispanic population is 26%. No holder lives in the neighborhood.
- Quarter 4: Fort Collins and Douglas County are the main population centers of the district, which is said to still extend all along the eastern border of the state. Windsor, where the current representative of the US GOP. Ken buck lives, is not included in the redesigned neighborhood. But candidates do not have to live in the constituency in which they are running.
- Quarter 5: El Paso County is the only county in that district represented by the Republican representative of the United States. Doug Lamborn from Colorado Springs
- Quarter 6: The county of Arapahoe constitutes this district, with slices of the counties of Adams, Douglas and Jefferson. Democrat US Rep. Jason raven, from Centennial, represents the district.
- Quarter 7: Jefferson County dominates this district, but it also stretches southwest to several mountain counties including Fremont, Park, Teller, Chaffee and more. Rep. Democratic Ed Perlmutter, from Arvada, represents the district.
- Ward 8: The new district, a result of Colorado’s booming population growth, centers on Adams and Weld counties, with slices of Denver and Larimer County. It would be 38% Hispanic.
It’s the first of three maps that will be drawn by non-partisan staff based on data from the 2020 census, although the commission can approve that plan if there are eight of 12 votes in favor. But expect the process to move forward quite quickly after this point. After the commissioners receive a presentation on Monday at 6 p.m., they will immediately begin a series of public hearings that will run through the end of this week (see more below).
While we all digest send us your questions and comments on the new proposal.
FOLLOWING: Here are the meeting themes across Colorado on the new state congressional legislative maps.
COMPETITIVENESS: How do these neighborhoods jostle for each political party?
Here is what the analysis of the redistribution staff showed, based on an average of the results eight statewide elections:
(Negative numbers mean a Democrat won, while positive numbers mean a Republican won.)
- Ward 1: A secure Democratic seat, -56%
- Quarter 2: A secure Democratic seat, -22.4%
- Quarter 3: A competitive seat with a slight advantage for Republicans, 5.5%
- Quarter 4: A secure Republican seat, 15.6%
- Quarter 5: A secure Republican seat, 20.3%
- Quarter 6: A secure Democratic seat, -15.6%
- Quarter 7: A competitive seat with a slight advantage for the Democrats, -5.2%
- Ward 8: A competitive seat, -1.5%
You can also Click here to see the voter registration for each of the proposed districts.
SOUTH COLORADO: Congressional commissioners have been debating for weeks whether to adopt requirements for a new district centered on southern Colorado, but were unable to reach an agreement this week.
Some commissioners are totally against the idea, and even among supporters there is a lot of disagreement over the specific boundaries of such a district. This includes concerns that a southern district would be too sprawling or create issues in how districts in other parts of the state will be drawn.
The new map released on Friday includes a southern neighborhood, but non-partisan staff noted in a memo that it is up to the commissioners to resolve this division before the staff draw up a final map.
“By submitting this first congressional staff plan, the non-partisan staff are not recommending or suggesting that the Congressional Committee approve a plan to redistribute Congress with a largely southern district,” according to the memo. “Again, this is a choice the Congressional Committee must make.”
Keep in mind that the staff still have two cards to draw, and the commissioners may ultimately choose to reject those cards entirely, draw their own, or adopt a card drawn by another party. The final decision is in their hands.
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Public hearings: Yesour opportunities to influence the map project
There are four opportunities to provide your comments on the maps to the Independent Congressional Redistribution Commission. People can attend in person at the locations listed below, or join virtually. Commissioners will participate entirely online.
The in-person locations are meant to allow people with limited or no internet access to testify, said Jessica shipley, commission staff director, with mostly virtual meetings due to the increase in coronavirus cases.
- 6 p.m. – 9 p.m. Tuesday for residents of the 1st Congressional District at the State Capitol or via Zoom
- 9 a.m. – 12 p.m. Wednesday for residents of the 4th and 5th arrondissements via Zoom, at the Limon Community Center or at the Bibliothèque de la Fontaine
- 1 p.m. – 4 p.m. Thursday for residents of the 2nd and 3rd arrondissements via Zoom, Eagle Community Center or Grand Lake Center
- 9 a.m. to 12 p.m. on Friday for residents of the 6th and 7th arrondissements via Zoom, at the Thornton Community Center or Aurora Community College
People can continue to provide written comments online. The commission will approve a final congressional map by September 28 and then submit it to the Colorado Supreme Court.
State House and Senate cards set to be dropped on September 13
As you digest the new Congress map, remember: Legislative maps are next. The State House and Senate maps will be released on September 13, followed by a noon presentation on September 14 to the Independent Legislative Redistribution Commission.
Then, place for public hearings:
- 6 p.m. Friday September 17
- 10 a.m. on Saturday, September 18
- 6 p.m. Saturday September 18
The legislative committee also voted on Friday, by 9 to 3, the adoption a competitiveness policy which averages the results of eight statewide races between 2016 and 2020, with a maximum differential of 8.5% between Republican and Democratic candidates in each district.
Cards, cards and more cards
Several interest groups have come up with their own ideas on the location of the state’s eight districts in the United States, based on the recent release of detailed data from the 2020 Census. The proposals are, so to speak, a everywhere.
The graph above shows some of the stark differences between the personnel plan presented late Friday, the preliminary personnel map released in June, and the maps recently proposed by Colorado Common Cause; Colorado Latino Leadership, Advocacy and Research Group, and League of United Latino American Citizens.
As we mentioned in our last Remaping 2021 newsletter, these maps vary considerably not only from each other, but also in the makeup of current districts. Some of the proposals put incumbents at risk, but the constitutional amendments that created the independent commissions specifically state that elected officials and candidates should not be protected or taken into account.
Headlines: What Else Should You Read
>> DENVER: In some neighborhoods in North Denver, the populations of people who identify as Hispanic are declining by double digits. Denverite examines how political representation of these neighborhoods, once the center of a Chicano political movement, could change with gentrification and new demographics.
>> PROBLEM IN TEXAS: Two Democratic Senators from the State of Texas want state courts to redraw new political maps, claiming that the state’s constitution requires maps to be drawn in the first “regular” session after the release of census data. It won’t happen until 2023.
>> COMPARE COLORADO: The Washington Post has cool interactive comparing how various states manage the congressional redistribution in 2021. Colorado is one of seven states where independent commissions are drawing new districts.
>> DRAW YOUR OWN MAPS: As many of you may already know, there are many tools available for you to draw your own maps, including one provided by Colorado commissions. This is the first round of redistribution where such software is readily available. But as a The Utah lawmaker warned in this Stateline article, “It’s not as easy as you might think.”
Hey, thanks for reading our newsletter. Normally we post on Monday afternoon, but given the release of the new Congress Map, we thought you might want to take a look at it earlier. Be sure to come back with us on Tuesday for a deeper dive into the Congress map, and be sure to register for an upcoming public hearing if you want to participate.
And not pinball – this is the first of at least three cards!
– You and the fish
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