Maryland: One More Map

OK … this is probably my last attempt at redrawing my home state of Maryland.   I feel that this is my best plan yet.  I create eight solid Democratic districts (58% or more Obama each) while making each district as compact as possible.

There’s just one problem — Steny Hoyer may not be happy (?).  However, the best way to get 8 Democrats out of Maryland AND to create very compact districts at the same time is to draw the map this way, where parts of the current MD-4 and MD-5 are combined.  The new MD-4 combines much of Prince George’s Co. with southern Maryland and is majority black.  It is drawn for Donna Edwards; African-Americans would comprise approximately 63% of the Democratic primary vote there (white voters about 32%).  Hoyer (who lives in St. Mary’s Co.) can move and run in the new MD-5 which includes much of northern PG Co. and northern and central Anne Arundel Co.  Northern PG was Hoyer’s home base in the past and, at one point or another in his career, Hoyer has represented about 43% of the new MD-5, so it would not be a stretch for him to run there.  The new MD-7 also remains majority black, and African-Americans would comprise approximately 60% of the Democratic primary there.   Other than Hoyer, the plan keeps the home of each incumbent in their district.  The population deviation ranges from 4 to 848 persons per district.







District 1

60% Obama, 39% McCain (currently 40% Obama, 58% McCain)

61% white, 33% black

All of Eastern Shore; southern part of Anne Arundel Co.; central part of Prince George’s Co.

District 2

58% Obama, 40% McCain (currently 60% Obama, 38% McCain)

69% white, 22% black

All of Harford Co.; northern part of Baltimore Co.; northern and central parts of Baltimore City

District 3

58% Obama, 41% McCain (currently 59% Obama, 39% McCain)

63% white, 25% black

All of Howard Co. and Carroll Co.; western part of Baltimore Co.; one precinct in PG to maintain equal population of districts

District 4

75% Obama, 24% McCain (currently 85% Obama, 14% McCain)

50%+ black, 39% white

All of southern Maryland; southern and central parts of Prince George’s Co.

District 5

59% Obama, 40% McCain (currently 65% Obama, 33% McCain)

57% white, 24% black, 12% hispanic

Northern part of Prince George’s Co.; northern and central parts of Anne Arundel Co.; most of Takoma Park in Montgomery Co.

District 6

62% Obama, 36% McCain (currently 40% Obama, 58% McCain)

59% white, 15% black, 12% asian, 12% hispanic

Northern part of Montgomery Co.; northern and central parts of Frederick Co.

District 7

67% Obama, 31% McCain (currently 79% Obama, 20% McCain)

50%+ black, 44% white

Eastern part of Baltimore Co.; most of Baltimore City

District 8

61% Obama, 37% McCain (currently 74% Obama, 25% McCain)

69% white, 11% black; 10% hispanic

All of western Maryland; southern part of Frederick Co.; southern part of Montgomery Co.

(PS.  In my last diary, I indicated that I was working on a very compact plan for California in which as many Democratic districts as possible are created.  I did come up with a plan with 48 Democratic seats for the state (each district is at least 55% Obama) with very compact districts that adhere to county lines and actually have less county fragments than even the bipartisan, commission-drawn map of the 1990’s  However, I will not post my plan as I strongly believe that the resulting map is in effect a “dummymander”; 55% Obama districts are just not strong enough to assure Democratic representation in California.)  

12 thoughts on “Maryland: One More Map”

  1. I think Hoyer would be fine with it. My understanding is that he lived in Mitchellville (in northern P.G.) for years, but that after his wife died he moved into a condo on Capital Hill. The St. Mary’s County house, while his legal residence, is basically a vacation home.

  2. They ought to gerrymander his district a bit to make it safer for him.  This district was originally created to be a seat safe to moderate Republicans.  When that rule was broken with Andy Harris winning the 2008 primary against the moderate incumbent, Kratovil had a shot.  If he beats Andy Harris in their rematch, Kratovil deserves to have a safer district now that MD-01’s original purpose has been squandered.  

  3. O’Malley wins Democrats have no excuse to not shore up Kratovil’s district. (2/3 majority and over in the state legislature) Even if Kratovil loses, there’s no reason to keep that Republican in that seat.  

  4. The Maryland state government is known for making partisan Democratic gerrymanders. The only reason they would turn this down is because it’s too clean and compact.

  5. It all looks good except for Cummings’ district. Yes, it’s compact, but it contains Essex and Dundalk, which have the potential to elect Democrats but just don’t like blacks at all. This map might inflame people enough in this area to vote out dems at the local level (especially younger, less experienced ones), so I think it would be better to find another solution; not saying I have the answers, but the local dems would never let this fly.

  6. I was also thinking about the 2 county council seats that span that area…

    Also, I really think that 40% (or whatever Obama got) might not be a low for this area. I don’t think the people there really cared who got elected (the area is very apathetic and caustic). I mean, people voted for McCain mostly, but he had no campaign there, and nobody tried to convince anyone to vote for him.

    You stick these people with a black representative, and let me tell you, there will be hell to pay. As recently as 1994 we had a bunch of protests in this area over something called “Moving to Opportunity,” which was a federal program that didn’t really do much (it just gave grants to housing providers who helped low income families escape impoverished neighborhoods or something like that), but somehow a rumor got around that they were gonna move all the poor black people out of the inner city and into Essex and Dundalk, and people had a huge fit. There were a lot of angry protests, and all the local Dems had to come out strongly against it to save their hides. All of the local pols weathered the storm because it was a federal program; however, ever since then the people have lived in constant fear that black people are going to “take over” their neighborhoods; having a black rep would only remind them of this.

    I’ve seen these people organize before; against Moving to Opportunity, against Dutch Ruppersberger’s eminent domain plan, and against Glendenning’s first legislative map (they were the ones who sued and got it thrown out). Give them a black representative, and they might just start organizing for the Republicans.

    All that being said, my solution would be to split Harford County, as there are no elected Dems in the Bel Air area that would be hurt by such a thing. It may look uglier, but there would be peace at least.

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