Maryland: Effective 8-0 Plan

I have yet once again redone my Maryland map.  I’m using the “original” version of Dave’s Application here as I did the map a while back but just haven’t had the chance to do the write-up.

Bottom line: there’s no reason not to do an 8-0 map, knowing that the GOP will do something similar in a number of states.  Democrats still have the trifecta in Maryland (we actually picked up a few seats in the state Senate here in November, btw !)

I had several goals in mind for this map:

– VRA: Both African-American-majority districts must have black population that is at least 1.5 times the size of the white population in those districts (to ensure representation).  The map does really well in this respect.  The black population in both MD-4 and MD-7 goes down from 57% and 59%, respectively, under the existing 2002 map — to 51% and 57%, respectively, under the proposed map here.  HOWEVER, because of the way the districts are reconfigured (expanding to include a lot more GOP-leaning territory in the northern part of the state) the proportion of African-Americans as a percentage of the Democratic primary vote in both districts goes up from approximately 70% now to approximately 80% under the proposed plan.

– Incumbency: Keep at least 50% of each Democratic incumbent’s current territory (population-wise) in the new district.  The percentages that each district gets to keep are below:

MD-1 – 66%

MD-2 – 70%

MD-3 – 62%

MD-4 – 53%

MD-5 – 74%

MD-6 – 49%

MD-7 – 55%

MD-8 – 78%

As you can see, it looks pretty good.  Other than the two minority-majority districts, each Democratic incumbent would get to keep at least 62% of their constituents.  This is important in any realistic redistricting plan for Maryland.  Although their districts get to keep only 53% and 55% of their existing constituents, Donna Edwards and Elijah Cummings should still be quite happy with their new districts for the reason discussed under “VRA” above.  In the case of MD-7 it should be noted that many areas in the eastern part of Baltimore City which were previously part of the district (prior to 2002) are now “returned” back to the district. So, while Cummings does not currently represent those constituents, the areas would likely be quite receptive to having him as a representative.  (I should also note that Steny Hoyer’s new district also contains territory which he has represented prior to 2002 — accounting for another 6% of the population —  so, in effect, the proposed MD-5 here includes 80% of territory Hoyer is currently representing or has represented in the past).

– Keep different parts/regions of the state “intact”.  This includes keeping the Eastern Shore whole in one district (same goes for Southern Maryland), keeping MD-2, MD-3 and MD-7 in the Baltimore orbit, while keeping MD-4, MD-5 and MD-8 in the Washington, DC orbit.  Likewise, I wanted to keep more communities intact.  Under the map here, the only incorporated cities that are split are Baltimore City (for obvious reasons), Mount Airy (because it is already split between two counties), and Hyattsville (although now it would only be split between two districts and not three like under the existing map).

Also, wanted to minimize county fragments and ensure that each district “corresponds” to a region or county.  Listed below is the largest jurisdiction (percentage of  district’s population) that each district is comprised of (you can look up the whole break-down under each district further down):

MD-1 – 62% Eastern Shore

MD-2 – 62% Baltimore County

MD-3 – 64% Anne Arundel and Howard Counties

MD-4 – 68% Prince George’s County

MD-5 – 76% Southern Maryland and Prince George’s Co.

MD-6 – 55% Montgomery County

MD-7 – 59% Baltimore City

MD-8 – 78% Montgomery County

As you can see, Montgomery Co. (the state’s largest) would form the majority of two Congressional districts under this plan.

– Partisanship (last, but not least !): Each new district must ensure that a Democrat is elected.  The percentages are discussed below the maps:






District 1:

Current District:  Obama 40; McCain 58

Proposed District:  Obama 56; McCain 43

Proposed District Demographics: 68% white; 25% black

Population: Eastern Shore 62%, Prince George’s Co. 20%, Anne Arundel Co. 18%

The 56% Obama percentage here would more than ensure that Frank Kratovil could make a comeback in 2012.

District 2:  

Current District:  Obama 60; McCain 38

Proposed District:  Obama 59; McCain 39

Proposed District Demographics: 66% white; 25% black

Population: Baltimore Co. 62%, Baltimore City 22%, Harford Co. 17%

District 3:  

Current District:  Obama 59; McCain 39

Proposed District:  Obama 59; McCain 39

Proposed District Demographics: 68% white; 19% black

Population: Howard Co. 33%, Anne Arundel Co. 31%, Baltimore Co. 26%, Baltimore City 10%

District 4:

Current District:  Obama 85; McCain 14

Proposed District:  Obama 72; McCain 27

Proposed District Demographics: 51% black; 33% white; 12% Hispanic

Population: Prince George’s Co. 68%, Carroll Co. 24%, Howard Co. 6%, Montgomery Co. 2%

District 5:

Current District:  Obama 65; McCain 33

Proposed District:  Obama 60; McCain 39

Proposed District Demographics: 59% white; 29% black

Population: Southern Maryland 47%, Prince George’s Co. 29%, Anne Arundel Co. 24%

District 6:

Current District:  Obama 40; McCain 58

Proposed District:  Obama 59; McCain 40

Proposed District Demographics: 66% white, 14% black, 10% Hispanic

Population: Montgomery Co. 55%, Frederick Co. 29%, Washington Co. 16%

District 7:  

Current District:  Obama 79; McCain 20

Proposed District:  Obama 69; McCain 30

Proposed District Demographics: 57% black; 38% white

Population: Baltimore City 59%, Baltimore Co. 24%, Harford Co. 17%

District 8:  

Current District:  Obama 74; McCain 25

Proposed District:  Obama 65; McCain 34

Proposed District Demographics: 63% white; 13% hispanic; 11% black; 11% asian

Population: Montgomery Co. 78%, Western Maryland 19%, Frederick Co. 3%

28 thoughts on “Maryland: Effective 8-0 Plan”

  1. thanks for posting.  

    The downside and what makes it unlikely to pass is that the likely result of this map over timeis that you would see all 8 congressman being residents of Baltimore/Baltimore county/Prince George/Montgomery county.

    By population these counties are just over 1/2 of the state and yet they dominate 7/8 districts plus if Howard & AA county fight over that one district the city or county of Baltimore will dominate it too.

    That’s the problem with Maryland those four counties dominate and set the tone for the state-politically but I am not sure the state legislators want all the congressional districts to be Baltimore/DC based.  

  2. I just have two thoughts:

    1) you could (and probably should) keep the 2nd District safer by giving it more of Baltimore. You have some room to ket out a little bit of Democratic strength from the 7th and still keep it VRA complaint.

    2) I worry just a tiny little bit about whether Montgomery County is quite Democratic enough to carry two districts. Roscoe Bartlett is toast in your new 6th, but might another Republican not be able to carry it?  

  3. can be a powerful force in the selection of congressman.  This arrangement per this mapbasically says Montgomery county gets two congressman and W. Maryland gets none.  

  4. When the district included most of Montgomery County, Connie Morella won it easily. If a Connie Morella-type Republican came along, they would have to problem sowing up the panhandle votes and getting just enough Montgomery County votes to win.

Comments are closed.