On Tuesday afternoon, the San Antonio three-judge federal panel overseeing Texas redistricting posted new maps for the State House, State Senate and U.S. Congress. We are awaiting a formal order enacting these maps, however, we expect that these will be the final maps issued by the panel. The Republican Party of Texas has carefully analyzed these maps since their release and is providing our staff’s findings via this update.
You can click on the above link to see the full analysis of the new State House districts in PDF format. This analysis shows side-by-side comparisons of the number of Republican districts under the maps used in the 2010 elections, the districts that were originally drawn by the Texas Legislature, the districts that were drawn by the three-judge panel in 2011 (and which were subsequently challenged), and the districts that the three-judge panel has issued today. The percentages are based on the average of the top 9 statewide Republican candidates in the 2010 General Election.
Our staff’s analysis leads to the conclusion that while the new State House map creates one less Republican district (defined as a district being over 50% Republican) than the map drawn by the Legislature – it is an improvement over the previous map issued by the San Antonio three-judge panel, which drew three less Republican districts. Thus, Attorney General Abbott’s appeal of the interim maps to the Supreme Court has yielded two more Republican districts than if he had not appealed. In addition, the new map creates the same number of districts as the original legislative map which are over 48% Republican, that being 102. This represents an improvement of one over the previous map drawn by the San Antonio three-judge panel. The new map also creates three more Republican districts over 55% than the previous map drawn by the San Antonio three-judge panel, although this is four districts less than the original legislative maps. However, the new map actually
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