Democrats Lock Down Key 2024 Swing State

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( – A federal judge in Georgia, U.S. District Judge Steve C. Jones, has recently approved a set of congressional maps drawn by the state’s Republican legislature. These new maps are significant as they introduce a majority-Black district in western metro Atlanta while also likely securing the Republican majority in the state’s congressional delegation.

In his 15-page ruling, Judge Jones noted that the Georgia General Assembly had adhered to his previous October directive, which mandated the creation of a majority-Black district. This new district, encompassing parts of Fulton, Douglas, and Cobb counties, has been crafted in response to a prior ruling by Jones. In that ruling, he declared the previous congressional and state legislative maps in Georgia in violation of the Voting Rights Act, citing their dilutive effect on the voting power of Black residents in the state.

However, these newly approved maps also reallocate the district currently represented by Democrat Lucy McBath, dividing it among neighboring districts and moving it to a more rural, likely Republican-leaning area. This redistricting is expected to help maintain the existing 9-5 Republican majority in the state’s House delegation.

Democrats and voting rights advocates have criticized the new maps. They argue that, although they comply with the directive to create a new Black-majority district, they do so at the expense of diminishing minority representation elsewhere.

In his decision, Judge Jones emphasized that his role does not extend to making policy decisions or judging the wisdom of legislative choices.

The redrawing of congressional maps has become a contentious issue in multiple states, including New York, Wisconsin, and Alabama. In Alabama, for instance, a panel of federal judges recently approved a new map after earlier versions were rejected for weakening Black voters’ influence. The new Alabama map maintains one majority-Black district and nearly adds a second, potentially boosting Democrats’ chances of gaining a Senate seat. These redistricting battles are expected to significantly impact the 2024 elections.

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