Redistricting is the way we change the districts that determine who represents us.
Every member of the U.S. House of Representatives, most of our state legislators, and many of our local legislators in towns and counties are elected from districts. These districts divide states and the people who live there, into geographical territories. Districts are occasionally the same size as the whole jurisdiction: members of a local school board, for example, may each be elected from an area with the same boundaries as the overall school district the board governs. Most of the time, though, district lines subdivide territory, so that there are several districts within one city or state, and representatives for each separate district. When that happens, we need some way to decide where the lines will be drawn.
The Tennessee House and Senate are currently debating and voting for the new state house, senate and congressional districts that must be done every 10 years after the Census is taken.
The Tennessee Democratic Party has said that the Republicans are “gerrymandering” to benefit the Republican stronghold. Here is a look at what is being proposed.
First of all, the Congressional district for our area will stay the same with Congressman Chuck Fleischmann continuing to represent our viewing area in the 3rd District.
The State Senate district is pretty much the same with Lt. Governor Randy McNally representing Anderson County, a portion of Knox County and Loudon County in Senate District 5. Senator Ken Yager will continue to represent Senate District 12 with some changes. A very large area with a population of 214,359.
The largest differences in the proposed redistricting is in the State House, where District 41 now encompasses parts of Anderson County, along with all of Morgan and Overton Counties, and a portion of Fentress, plus the Oliver Springs portion of Roane County. The population of the new district 41 is 67,446. The proposed population for each district is 69,806, a difference of -2,360 people.
Lawmakers in the Tennessee House of Representatives met Monday night to decide who represents Tennessee voters for the next 10 years, with Republican state lawmakers voting in favor of approving several bills tied to redistricting.
Lawmakers considered changes to district maps to determine who represents each district in the State Legislature and U.S. Congress. The Republican-majority House voted last night to approve all three maps for the Tennessee House, Senate and Congress.
Lt. Gov. Randy McNally, R-Oak Ridge, hailed both maps as “excellent work” in a statement.