California’s citizen redistricting commission finalized a new congressional map late Monday that puts every Democratic incumbent in a seat that President Joe Biden won by at least 10 points.
The independent commission’s maps also put most of California’s Republican incumbents in more competitive districts. And while Democratic Reps. Alan Lowenthal and Lucille Roybal-Allard’s districts were merged to accommodate California losing a House seat, both are retiring in 2022.
“This is a good map for Democrats,” J. Miles Coleman, an associate editor at Sabato’s Crystal Ball, told the Daily Caller News Foundation, noting how the new map could even “put Trump-won seats in play, depending on the year.”
“Its possible that Democrats’ 42-11 advantage could rise to 43-9 after the midterms,” Coleman added.
The new map also increases the political power of California’s sizeable Latino population, which has driven much of the state’s growth over the past decade. Eighteen districts would be majority Latino under the new map, up from 13 now.
Republicans criticized the map drawn by five Democrats, five Republicans and four Independents and approved unanimously, arguing that the improved Democratic circumstances showed political bias.
“The commission has shown they were not acting independently when they drew all of the Democratic incumbents into safer seats while making five out of the 11 Republican districts more vulnerable,” Republican Rep. Mike Garcia said in a statement to the Los Angeles Times.
In addition to Garcia, Republican Reps. Tom McClintock, David Valadao, Ken Calvert and Michelle Steel are all in more competitive districts, to forecaster David Wasserman, a senior editor at The Cook Political Report.
While California’s map bolsters its congressional Democratic supermajority, it is far from the only state to debut new maps that some have alleged are unfair. Republican maps in North Carolina, Texas, Ohio and Georgia further cement Democrats in their legislative minorities, while Democratic maps in Illinois, Maryland and New Mexico do the opposite.
In late October, Illinois Rep. Adam Kinzinger, one of the most prominent Republican critics of former President Donald Trump, announced his retirement from Congress after it became obvious Democrats in his state had drawn a redistricting map that essentially eliminated his seat.
The proposal would give Democrats a 14-3 advantage in the state, compared to the current 13-5 map. Illinois is one of several states losing a congressional seat this upcoming decade, and the new map, if adopted, would shore up Democrats in Chicago and its surrounding suburbs and create a winding Democratic seat that stretches from East St. Louis up through the middle of the state.
That district includes much of what is now held by Republican Rep. Rodney Davis, and includes Springfield, the state’s capital, Decatur and Champaign, home to the University of Illinois. The new map also shores up Rep. Cheri Bustos’ northern Illinois seat by having it encompass Bloomington, home to Illinois State University.
While most incumbent Republicans would likely be pitted against each other, Rep. Adam Kinzinger would likely have to run against Democratic Rep. Marie Newman in a suburban Chicago seat, making him an underdog for re-election.
“This redistricting process has been anything but transparent, which comes as no surprise to anyone,” Kinzinger said in a statement Friday. “I believe the people of Illinois deserve better.”
The Daily Caller News Foundation contributed to this report.