Dueling Commissions Charged with Redistricting

Date: September 16, 2021

Decennial process carries on

While more and more candidates are declaring their intent to run for state and federal office and all 188 seats in the General Assembly plus Maryland’s eight seats in the U.S. House of Representatives up for election in 2022, the big question remains: what will the maps look like for legislative and congressional districts?

Governor Larry Hogan established the Maryland Citizens Redistricting Commission through an executive order back in January of this year. The nine member commission is “charged with drawing fair legislative and congressional maps for the 2022 elections,” according to his press release. The membership includes three Democrats, three Republicans, and three independents. Governor Hogan has continually pressed the legislature to adopt new standards for redistricting ever since he first took office in 2014.

The General Assembly, meanwhile, has created its own group to tackle the task. Senate President Bill Ferguson and House Speaker Adrienne Jones have convened a group of six lawmakers, themselves included, to constitute the Legislative Redistricting Advisory Commission. This commission will be headed by the former executive director of the Department of Legislative Services, Karl Aro.

While it is anticipated each commission’s maps will differ in how they draw boundaries, the legislature has the ultimate say in whom voters will be casting their ballots for come November. Currently, Democrats have a vast majority in both chambers and can override a gubernatorial veto of any map they produce if they so choose.

Related Content: Small Business News | Elections | Maryland

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