HomeTexas GOP tries to protect US House seats under new maps – Press Enterprise

Texas GOP tries to protect US House seats under new maps – Press Enterprise

Written by Paul J. Weber

Austin, Texas (AFP) – Texas Republicans proposed a congressional remapping Monday that would bolster their waning dominance and bolster nearly two dozen members of the U.S. House of Representatives, while adding new districts in booming Austin and Houston.

Texas was the biggest winner in the 2020 census, as massive growth fueled by nearly two million new Hispanic residents made it the only state awarded two additional seats in Congress, bringing the total number of seats to 38.

These demographic shifts threaten decades of Republican control in Texas, but in the process of mapping new voting once-in-a-decade, the first draft of the GOP map makers looks more like a firewall to their existing seats and advantages than to take additional seats from the Democrats . There is one exception along the Texas-Mexico border, where — encouraged by former President Donald Trump’s strong performance in 2020 — Republicans could make it difficult for Democrats to hold on to the long-standing stronghold currently controlled by Representative Vicente Gonzalez.

Latin advocates and incumbents believe the numbers called for at least one seat for the Latin-majority Congress in Texas, around the Dallas area, but none were included in the Republican first pass.

Texas’ burgeoning suburban areas, which include four of the 10 fastest growing and rapidly diversifying cities in the United States, will be bolstered by more voters drawn from surrounding rural areas.

Republicans currently hold 23 seats in the Texas House of Representatives, while Democrats hold 13.

The maps are the product of Texas Republicans with more and newfound freedom to re-engineer political borders: For the first time in more than 50 years, Texas began redistricting without federal oversight. A 2013 Supreme Court ruling overturned mandatory federal approval of new maps of Texas and all or parts of 15 other states with a history of voting discrimination.

The redrawn counties revealed by the Republican mapmakers are the starting points and are likely to undergo changes in the coming weeks before being sent to Republican Governor Greg Abbott for his approval.

Republicans in America’s biggest red state want to expand their political advantage as their usual victories in Texas get weaker. Last year, Trump occupied Ohio by a larger margin than Texas, and Republicans panicked in 2018 when Democrats overturned dozens of state seats and Beto O’Rourke nearly ousted Senator Ted Cruz.

But Republicans held out in Texas in 2020, encouraging an aggressive agenda of hot conservative policymaking, and gains along the Hispanic-majority southern border prompted the Republican Party to try to expand its influence.

In every decade since the Voting Rights Act was passed in 1965, courts or the Department of Justice have ruled that redistricting plans in Texas violate federal laws—in part by scattering Democratic-leaning Latino voters among multiple counties dominated by white, non-Hispanic residents. lean republican.

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