14-4 Illinois Map: Second Attempt

The partisan data is still not in the Application.  Nevertheless, I wanted to post this DRAFT map now that the Census numbers are out.

I feel that my first attempt 15-3 map was perhaps too ambitious, but I feel confident that 14-4 is VERY doable in Illinois — ofcourse, the lines will have to be ugly like this “Texas-style” map.

I had several goals:

1.) Keep all 3 black seats intact; not easy considering hundreds of thousands of blacks have left Chicago over the last decade.

2.) Create two Hispanic seats — ones that would be guaranteed to elect Hispanic representatives.

3.) Keep all currently Democratic-held seats at very high Democratic levels (this includes the minority-majority seats, ofcourse, as well as IL-3, IL-5, IL-9, and IL-12).

4.) Create seats where the incumbent Democrat would keep as much of his or her current constituents as possible.

5.) Create a map whereby there are only 4 Republican seats, the newly created Democratic seats must be at relatively high Democratic levels – ideally around 65% Obama or higher in the Chicago area and around 60% Obama or higher in downstate and/or 5 points more Democratic than the existing seat.

6.) As a finishing touch, create a map whereby Aaron Schock and Adam Kinzinger will basically not have a seat to run in.

Here’s the map:




Goal 1:  Preserving African-American seats – under this map, virtually all black-majority precincts in the Chicago area become parts of the 3 black-majority districts.  The reason the black percentage goes down in all 3 seats is because hundreds of thousands of blacks have left the area over the last decade.

New IL-1 is 51.3 black, 38.7 white (18+ pop. is 51.5 black, 40.1 white) – Rush gets to keep 53% of his current constituents, including 75% of his current black constituents.

New IL-2 is 51.8 black, 37.2 white (18+ pop. is 50.1 black, 40.5 white) – Jackson gets to keep 80% of his current constituents, including 83% of his current black constituents.

New IL-7 is 51.8 black, 34.8 white (18+ pop. is 50.1 black, 37.5 white) – Davis gets to keep 59% of his current constituents, including 90% of his current black constituents.

Goal 2:  Two Effective Hispanic seats

New IL-4 is 56.0 hispanic, 33.2 white (18+ pop. is 50.4 hispanic, 38.9 white) – these percentages are enough to elect a Hispanic Representative as IL-4 encompasses the mostly Puerto Rican-descent areas on the north side of Chicago where the Hispanics are all citizens.  It makes sense to me that Gutierrez would run here.

New IL-6 is 64.1 hispanic, 25.1 white (18+ pop. is 58.5 hispanic, 30.1 white) – this area encompasses the mostly Mexican-descent areas on the south side of Chicago where there’s a higher proportion of non-citizens, so I made the Hispanic percentage here noticeably higher in order to make sure that a Hispanic Representative is elected.

Goal 3:  Make sure all currently Democratic-held seats are safely Democratic.

My estimate is that the 3 new black-majority seats and the 2 new hispanic seats above are all in the 75-79 Obama range (ofcourse, there’s currently only one hispanic seat but I’m classifying IL-4 and IL-6 as “Dem-held” as Gutierrez currently represents roughly half of each district) …

For the other currently Democratic-held seats the partisan numbers (ESTIMATED Obama as a percentage of the 2-party vote) are as follows:

New IL-3 is 62.3 Obama (current district is 64.4 Obama)

New IL-5 is 68.3 Obama (current district is 73.9 Obama)

New IL-9 is 70.2 Obama (current district is 73.2 Obama)

New IL-12 is 60.9 Obama (current district is 56.4 Obama)

Goal 4:  Incumbent-protection

I already discussed above what percentage of their constituents the Democrats in the minority-majority seats would keep.  For the other Democratic incumbents the numbers are as follows:

New IL-3: Lipinski gets to keep 33% of his current constituents (that’s the lowest percentage of all incumbent Democrats but a good chunk of the new Hispanic-majority IL-6 comes out of territory that’s currently a part of IL-3).

New IL-5: Quigley gets to keep 70% of his current constituents

New IL-9: Schakowsky gets to keep 75% of her current constituents

New IL-12: Costello gets to keep 63% of his current constituents

Goal 5:  Get rid of 7 of the current 11 GOP members through re-drawing of lines.

– As already mentioned, IL-6 goes from a suburban GOP district to a Hispanic-majority Democratic district based in Chicago (ofcourse, Roskam can run in the new IL-16 which becomes sort of a Chicago-area GOP vote sink).

– New IL-8 is 65.1 Obama (current district is 56.5 Obama), so Walsh is history (or he can run in the new IL-16).  The new IL-8 should be friendly to Bean if she wants to make a comeback.

– New IL-10 is 65.3 Obama (current district is 61.5 Obama), plus the district has a lot of new territory, including the entire Lake Michigan shoreline — so Dold is history.

– New IL-11 is 59.2 Obama (current district is 54.2 Obama).  Only 19% of Kinzinger’s current constituents remain in IL-11 under the new lines, so his base basically disappears with this map.  Also, the new IL-11 includes 3 major university towns.  It’s likely that this district would flip back to the Democratic side in 2012.

– New IL-14 is 62.4 Obama (current district is 55.6 Obama).  Hultgren won here over Foster by 51-45 (with the Green candidate at 4%) in a major GOP year, so the 7-point Democratic increase should more than do the job.  (Hultgren can run in the new IL-16 ofcourse.)

– New IL-17 is 60.8 Obama (current district is 57.2 Obama).  The lines are scrambled here considerably (less than half of the population of the new IL-17 comes out of Schilling’s current constituency) and most of Rockford is now included.  I really believe that almost any Democrat other than Hare would have no trouble here in 2012.

– IL-19 no longer exists, so that’s also one less Republican (although Shimkus may want to run in the new IL-18 — see below).

By my estimate, John Kerry would have won all of the 14 Democratic seats created by this map.

The four GOP seats that remain:

– IL-13: now transferred to the southern reaches of the state but without an incumbent.  Although Republican, less so than the other 3 GOP seats, so perhaps a possibility that a moderate to conservative Democrat could win here.

– IL-15: Johnson gets to keep 67% of his current constituents under the new lines.

– IL-16: The most likely Republicans to run here include Manzullo, Walsh, Hultgren, Roskam and Biggert (not necessarily in that order) — yes, the map packs these 5 into one district, with a few Dold precincts also included !

– IL-18: designed more for Shimkus than for Schock — 29% of the new district’s population comes out of Shimkus’ current district, while only 20% comes out of Schock’s … which brings me to the last goal …

Goal 6:  Make it hard for Kinzinger and Schock

I already discussed Kinzinger a bit above.  Basically, the current IL-11 gets split as follows: 19% of Kinzinger’s constituents remain in IL-11; 30% go into the new IL-2; 22% into IL-1; 18% into IL-3; 6% into IL-15; and 5% into IL-18.

As far as Schock, his current district is likewise torn apart; the highest proportion of his current constituents (30%) goes to IL-15; the rest is divided among IL-11 (27%); IL-18 (20%); IL-13 (15%); IL-12 (7%); with a sliver going to IL-17.

To briefly sum up my map:

1.) Democratic; black-majority; Rush

2.) Democratic; black-majority; Jackson

3.) Democratic; 62.3 Obama; Lipinski

4.) Democratic; hispanic-majority; Gutierrez

5.) Democratic; 68.3 Obama; Quigley

6.) Democratic; hispanic-majority; new Hispanic representative (?)

7.) Democratic; black-majority; Davis

8.) Democratic; 65.1 Obama; Bean (?)

9.) Democratic; 70.2 Obama; Schakowsky

10.) Democratic; 65.3 Obama; new Dem. representative (?)

11.) Democratic; 59.2 Obama; new Dem. representative (?)

12.) Democratic; 60.9 Obama; Costello

14.) Democratic; 62.4 Obama; Foster (?)

17.) Democratic; 60.8 Obama; new Dem. representative (?)

13.) Republican; new GOP Rep. (?)

15.) Republican; Johnson

16.) Republican; Manzullo, Hultgren or Walsh most likely to win here

18.) Republican; Shimkus

75 thoughts on “14-4 Illinois Map: Second Attempt”

  1. That is the most atrocious looking map I have ever seen (and believe me, I’ve seen some quite atrocious maps on this site). silver spring, you have my deepest-held respect for how brutally effective this map is.

  2. The only concern I have is that the crazy lines might serve as a hook for a racial gerrymander claim.

  3. On one hand this map is pure genius. On the other I am more of a compact district kind of guy. Congrats on the effort.  

  4. Republicans would not like being concentrated mostly Downstate. You also effectively put together most of the Republican strength in Cook County and suburbs, very strategic. This guarantees that most GOP members would be very conservative, therefore having zero crossover appeal and no threat for statewide office.

  5. The Illinois Dems need to see this! Not because I think this would necessarily be a good idea, but they need to know the limits of what they can do! Great work.  

  6. I think we here at SSP need a person dedicated to getting all of the gerrymanders to the respective state legislatures. I mean, some of the map drawers for the leg are very tame. I think if nothing else, it would open their eyes to new possibilities, and at best we may even see one of our maps put more or less into reality!!

  7. It looks like Chinatown is kept more intact in your work than in the existing districts.  Since Gov. Quinn signed a bill claimed to improve the redistricting process for Chinatown and other minority neighborhoods, this would be worth factoring in the new boundaries.


    The 10th district above is awesome.  I don’t think high tide effects the shoreline much but sometimes Chicago gets bad seiches.  The district gets so narrow it is hard to see at one point.  Perhaps that is because the people living there are not on land but in boats at Montrose harbor?   😉

    Anyway, good work.

    1. [T]he State was subjected to steady Justice Department pressure to create the maximum number of majority-black districts, and there is considerable evidence the State was predominantly driven by this consideration even in developing its 1991 plan. In support of their position, appellants rely on broad assertions in the State’s brief in this Court in Johnson v. Miller that the original plan “was not perceived as a “racial gerrymander.”’ Brief for Miller Appellants in Miller v. Johnson, O.T.1994, No. 94-631, p. 49. Against these assertions, appellees point to the testimony of Ms. Meggers, Director of Reapportionment Services for the Georgia General Assembly, that the second majority-black district was originally designed as a concession to the Justice Department’s max-black policy. After being presented with a proposed map of the Eleventh District, ” [t]he initial response in our office was that’s ridiculous.” “It was said that it doesn’t make any sense and I said maybe not, but . . . we may get in trouble with the Justice Department if we don’t draw [it] . . . like that and I think that was . . . the main reason” it was originally drawn. Tr. 431-432 (Oct. 30, 1995). Ms. Meggers referred to an “understanding” between the leadership in the legislature and the black caucus that a second majority-black district would be created. Id., at 431. The testimony of several legislators indicated that any such understanding was arrived at in the shadow of the Justice Department’s max-black goal, and that all other policies were to give way to this racial consideration. Robert Hanner, chairman of the House Reapportionment Committee, so indicated in his testimony. Id., at 74-75. Sonny Dixon, a member of the House Reapportionment Committee, confirmed this account and said legislators felt pressure from the Justice Department in 1990 to create all possible majority-black districts. Id., at 81. Thomas Murphy, Speaker of the Georgia House of Representatives in 1990 and now, said in his deposition that the initial 1991 reapportionment plan was based on “what we at least perceived to be the direction and instructions of the Justice Department.”

  8. I enjoyed looking at it. I say this everytime I see an IL map here that there is the “possible” and then the “likely”.  I think not  all would  but most of the incumbent freak out over this map. Plus  many democratic legislators, from outstate and suburban areas, would object to it.  That’s just my opinion.

    I am not sure about VRA for the hispanic seats.  50% VAP hispanic and even 58% VAP is close. The white % of 38 & 30% VAP also is a concern.  My general guidline is that hispanic turnout in VAP is 1/2 or so of white turnout.  

    I defer to others and I look at these matters from a certain prespective.  My concern would be is if there are hispanic voters left in CD5, CD9 or CD3 that could bump it up that DOJ or the hispanic community would insist that more of Chicago or Cook county  be left in these hispanic seats. I add from a political standpoint suburban voters would be a lot less friendly then city voters.  I am sure you can use these hispanic seats as a drain for DuPage county voters.  

  9. I’d say this is more “Maryland-style” than “Texas-style” myself. If Annapolis were redistricting Illinois instead of Springfield, this might be a decent approximation of what we might expect..

    Anyhow, I just wanted to add that I’m reasonably confident that you can create a 14-4 Illinois map without going to such extremes. For one, the Kerry-Bush numbers are way to out-of-date. The correct numbers to use, in my view, are adjusted Obama-McCain numbers. The demographics in Illinois have simply changed way too much since 2004 for the Kerry-Bush numbers to be valid for much of the state.

    In any case, thanks for the map! Gives me a few more ideas for my eventual 14-4 map. I’m finally wrapping up my partisan map (i.e., a map of DEM/GOP precincts) – I’ll have the state outside Cook County done today, and Cook/Chicago done over the next few days. Then I’ll be able to see precisely where to put the lines, and I’ll be good to go!

  10. This is the sexiest illinois redistricting map ever. The weakest democratic district is Obama 59%. For the love of god, somebody email this map to the dems in illinois.

  11. This is too hilariously awesome.  Though I feel tempted to diss it for the reason “needs moar bacon”.

    Not that I’d support it in real life; I’m a compact-districts advocate.  But still…yeah.

  12. That is like Tom DeLay on steroids.  Someone needs to send this to the legislature just to show them that anything they do can’t possibly be as ugly as this, so they shouldn’t hesitate to do anything that’s semi-questionable.

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