A US Congressional redistribution plan released on Tuesday would turn the historically competitive 1st Congressional District, represented by Representative Nancy Mace, into a more reliable Red District, leaving Democrats unlikely to hold more than one seat in the House.
The map project, produced by the South Carolina Senate Redistribution Committee, leaves five of the state’s seven congressional districts largely unchanged and focuses primarily on adjusting the population disparities between the growing 1st and 6th districts , held by House Majority Whip Jim Clyburn, D-Columbia
The coastal district of Mace, which has grown explosively over the past decade and needed to lose an estimated 88,000 people, has lost parts of Charleston County to the largely rural, predominantly black district of Clyburn, including parts of West Ashley, approximately half of Johns Island, and a segment of downtown Charleston that includes the College of Charleston.
The District of Clyburn in turn traded parts of Berkeley County with Mace, whose district added the communities of Jamestown, Shulerville, Huger, Cordesville and Cainhoy, the Naval Weapons Base of Goose Creek and the southern tip of the Jasper County.
The 6th district would still have enough African Americans to ensure that black voters could elect a candidate of their choice under the Senate proposal, but would no longer be a majority black district.
The constituency changes, which leave all constituencies within one person of the ideal of 731,204, have been heavily criticized on social media by Democrats and the South Carolina Non-Partisan League of Voters.
“This is a card that would render South Carolina voters obsolete in November,” tweeted the League, which released its own draft congressional card, minutes after the Senate redistribution committee released its proposal.
Marc Elias, a well-known voting rights attorney who has represented several Democratic presidential candidates, tweeted that he was “watching” South Carolina, after a Democratic political consultant claimed the card left Republicans in. South Carolina open to a “grand trial”.
a map analysis of the Senate Congress The proposal from Dave’s Redistricting, a popular map drawing tool, found that it made racing slightly less competitive than the current map. The 1st arrondissement, which currently leans for Republicans by around 11%, according to the application, would now favor the GOP by around 14%.
The proposal would divide 13 of South Carolina’s counties into two districts, one more than the current map. It divides Calhoun County between 2nd and 6th Districts and Jasper County between 1st and 6th Districts, but unlike the current map, does not divide Newberry County.
Newberry, which is currently divided between the 3rd and 5th arrondissements, remains whole in the 3rd arrondissement, represented by representative Jeff Duncan, R-Laurens, in the proposed new draw.
A Senate redistribution committee will meet Monday morning to collect public testimony on the plan.
This story will be updated.
Journalist Caitlin Byrd contributed to this article.
This story was originally published 24 November 2021 10:21 a.m.