Tuesday, September 28, 2010

Florida and New York gain importance
in 2010 with new redistricting estimates

From Aaron Blake of The Washington Post on Sept. 27:
Eighteen states are slated to gain or lose congressional seats after this election cycle, with governor's race Florida and New York now taking on increased importance in this year's elections, according to the latest estimates from Election Data Services.

New York, which had previously been projected to lose one seat in reapportionment, is now slated to drop from 29 seats to 27 seats. Florida, meanwhile, has gone from gaining one seat to gaining two seats and would also have 27 districts for the 2012 elections.

That means, when districts are redrawn by the state legislatures and approved (or not) by the governor next year, two incumbents could get the squeeze in New York, while two brand new districts would be created in Florida.

While most states will be tinkering with the same number of districts that they had the last time congressional lines were redrawn a decade ago, states that are losing or gaining seats will see potentially seismic political changes. And that makes controlling the state legislature and the governor's mansion, which control that redistricting process in most states, that much more important.

So, while both major parties always place heavy emphasis on winning control of large population states like Florida, New York, Ohio and Texas, the stakes are that much higher in this year's election.


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