Our new book is titled Divided We Stand: The 2020 Elections and American Politics. Among other things, it discusses state elections.
This year’s redistricting of state legislatures is shaping up as extremely partisan across the country, as the parties in power seek to hold onto sometimes-thin statehouse majorities with creative map-drawing.
At the forefront are diversifying but still Republican states in the South, such as Georgia and Texas, where cities are becoming magnets for Democratic-leaning newcomers seeking jobs and less expensive housing. In both states, the number of Democratic voters has moved closer to parity with Republicans, but redistricting will give the GOP bigger legislative majorities than their statewide numbers would indicate, according to PlanScore, an analytical project of the anti-gerrymandering Campaign Legal Center.
Republicans in those states are girding for battle to keep power, said Andrew Romeo, communications director for the Republican State Leadership Committee in Washington, D.C. “Our priority in 2022 is to protect our razor-thin majorities.”
In 19 states with redistricting plans already approved, the majority party is expected to win 56% or less of the statewide vote in November but has drawn maps likely to deliver a significantly larger share of statehouse seats, according to PlanScore. In addition to Georgia and Texas, Republicans are ready to rack up especially skewed statehouse majorities in Florida, Indiana, Ohio, West Virginia and Wisconsin.
Thanks to their own creative line-drawing, Democrats are likely to do the same thing in Illinois and Oregon.