October 22, 2021

Via the Texas Tribune, the reality of the new Texas redistricting map makes it virtually impossible for Democrats. Even though most of the population growth in the state that results in two new congressional seats comes from Black and Latino residents, the new districts somehow mysteriously result in white Republican control. If anything, the map makes the entire state even more white and Republican -- accidentally, of course.

The proposed maps favor Republicans more than the state’s voters do. But even if they were precisely representative of how Texans voted in the last statewide elections, the GOP would have an edge: They won all of those contests.

Whatever else you might say about that situation — whether it’s “to the majority go the spoils” or “gerrymandering is undemocratic” — those are the maps that will be used in the 2022 elections. And if they aren’t given wholesale makeovers, they strongly favor Republican candidates and are designed to keep Republican majorities in all four places.

Democratic candidates haven’t won a statewide election in Texas since 1994. Midterm elections — those that fall between presidential elections — are typically hard on the party of whoever is in the White House. That’s a Democrat right now, and Republicans running for office in Texas (and everywhere else in the country) will be campaigning against whichever Biden administration policy happens to be most unpopular with voters at the time.

There will be lawsuits. Oh, yes. Marc Elias of Democracy Docket will enter the fray, and he has a record of winning almost every suit like this:

And Latino groups are also suing:

So it's not over yet.

Here's the thing, as Joe Biden would say. The reason Joe Manchin couldn't get even one Republican vote for his Freedom to Vote Act is, they're planning to hijack the next election. And since the bill puts an end to gerrymandering, well, we can't have that.

But there will be lawsuits. And I think Democrats (yes, even Joe Manchin and Kyrsten Sinema) understand that without the voting rights bill, the nation is screwed. So stay tuned.

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