The New Hampshire State Senate is set to vote on the House-approved redistricting plan on Thursday.
New Hampshire is one of four remaining states that have yet to complete their congressional redistricting process. The others are Louisiana, Florida, and Missouri.
The New Hampshire Senate Election Law Committee approved the new congressional maps on March 7. Those maps were previously passed by the state House in January.
Nate Silver’s fivethirtyeight currently gives the New Hampshire’s 1st Congressional District seat a partisan rating of R+1.
The plan, if enacted into law, would make NH-1 much more Republican friendly by removing a large number of Democrat voters from the 1st district and giving them to the 2nd district. The new map, would see NH-1’s current fivethirtyeight R+1 partisan rating moving to a R+9. Incumbent U.S. Representative Chris Pappas (D-NH-01), would face an uphill battle in his campaign for reelection. NH-2 would move from a D+2 partisan rating to a D+10, giving Democrats a major advantage for that seat.
Governor Chris Sununu stated his preference for a map that would keep both NH-1 and NH-2 competitive for Republicans, but he has not indicated that he plans to veto the plan that is coming to the state Senate floor.
In Louisiana, Democrat Governor John Bel Edwards vetoed the plan passed by the Republican legislature.
Edwards said, “I have vetoed the proposed congressional map drawn by Louisiana’s Legislature because it does not include a second majority African American district, despite Black voters making up almost a third of Louisianans per the latest U.S. Census data. This map is simply not fair to the people of Louisiana and does not meet the standards set forth in the federal Voting Rights Act.”
The vetoed proposal, which passed the Legislature in February, kept the partisan makeup of five strong Republican seats and one majority Democrat seat. Edward’s veto statement indicates that he favors a map that would eliminate one strong Republican seat, creating a strong Democrat seat.
It is unclear if Republicans in the legislature will have the votes to override Edward’s veto, as the vote to pass in the state House was just short of the two-thirds majority required. Some Republicans opposed the measure and some were absent from the vote but they may come back in line for a veto override vote. The Senate vote to pass was exactly two-thirds.
In Florida, the Legislature passed a two map plan, which Governor Ron DeSantis (R) said is dead-on-arrival. If the Legislature and DeSantis cannot come to an agreement on a single map, barring a successful veto override vote, the new lines may find themselves drawn by a court.
A lawsuit has already been filed, asking the court to draw new lines if the executive branch’s stalemate with the legislature continues. Republicans have control of the Legislature and the governor’s office.
In Missouri, the state’s redistricting process is currently at an impasse. Republicans have control over the redistricting process as they control the Legislature and the governor’s mansion. However, the state House and state Senate chambers have not come to an agreement on a plan. Paul Berry III, a Republican U.S. House candidate, filed a lawsuit with the stated goal being to get the Legislature to pass new maps or get the court to draw the lines. The filing deadline for candidates in Missouri is March 29.
The state House had passed a map that would have kept the partisan makeup of the existing districts the same, with five solid Republican, one lean Republican, and two solid Democrat seats. The Senate rejected that plan. Discussion currently centers around a plan, if agreed upon, that would create six solid Republican seats along with two solid Democrat seats.
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Aaron Gulbransen is a reporter at The Connecticut Star and The Star News Network. Email tips to [email protected] Follow Aaron on GETTR.
Photo “New Hampshire State Capitol” by AlexiusHoratius CC BY-SA 3.0.