I decided to attempt redistricting Arizona, with its requirements for districts based around communities of interest. Arizona will pick up a 9th Congressional seat in 2012, though it’s tough to say which is the ‘new’ seat in my map as I moved a lot of things around in the Phoenix metro area. Changes elsewhere were less radical.
Caveats: While the district populations are all roughly equal in DRA, they have the potential to be out of whack in reality, particularly in Pinal County, I’m told. Also, I have little first hand knowledge of Arizona and am going mostly off of what I’ve read in other diaries, so cue Nico picking this apart in 3…2…1
So, here goes:
Arizona’s 1st Congressional District
Demos: 59% White, 1% Black, 20% Native American, 18% Hispanic, 1% Asian, 1% Otther
Description: Similar to the current 1st, though it sheds most of the non-rural Pinal stuff and picks up rural parts of Cochise and the rural portions of Maricopa instead. The district, as drawn is designed to keep as many rural interests in the state together as possible. The swaps have made this a more Republican district than the current 1st, but I’m guessing that it’s definitely winnable for the right kind of Democrat.
Arizona’s 2nd Congressional District
Demos: 74% White, 3% Black, 2% Native American, 2% Asian, 17% Hispanic, 1% Other
The 2nd stays similar to its current configuration. It does pick up all of La Paz County from the current 8th, but the western Phoenix suburbs, including most of Glendale, dominate here. So, what you have are two communities of interest: the smaller cities on the Western half of the state and the bulk of the West Valley of Phoenix. Should send a GOPer to Congress.
Arizona’s 3rd Congressional District
Demos: 79% White, 2% Black, 1% Native American, 3% Asian, 13% Hispanic, 1% Other
The 3rd remains a North Phoenix dominated district. However, it sheds Central Phoenix to the new 6th and picks up North Scottsdale and Paradise Valley from the old 5th. What I’m aiming for here is to combine the wealthier suburbs into a single district. I’m guessing that even Ben Quayle is probably safe here, and any other GOPer would have a job for life.
Arizona’s 4th Congressional District
Demos: 72% White, 3% Black, 1% Native American, 2% Asian, 20% Hispanic, 1% Other
The new 4th contains the whiter, farther out 2nd ring suburbs of Phoenix (East Mesa and Gilbert) along with the bulk of Pinal County. I’m not going to lie-this configuration is largely because aside from the Indian reservations and the rural parts, I wasn’t quite sure how to carve up Pinal, so I figured that keeping it mostly together (minus the Indian Reservations in the 8th and the rural east in the 1st) as a community of interest wasn’t the worst idea in the world. I’m guessing this is a GOP slam dunk.
Arizona’s 5th Congressional District
Demos: 22% White, 9% Black, 2% Native American, 2% Asian, 65% Hispanic, 1% Other
This is basically the current 4th CD, except that it loses the whiter portions of Central Phoenix to the new 6th and gains a little more population in the West Valley. Best Dem district in the state from a PVI perspective.
Arizona’s 6th Congressional District
Demos: 50% White, 5% Black, 3% Native American, 4% Asian, 37% Hispanic, 2% Other
Tempe plus Central Phoenix in a district that, to me anyways, makes a huge amount of sense as it brings together two ASU campuses plus the seat of government. I think of this as the Texas 25th of Arizona, a white, liberalish seat; say hello to some sort of Democrat here.
Arizona’s 7th Congressional District
Demos: 65% White, 3% Black, 4% Native American, 2% Asian, 24% Hispanic, 2% Other
The aim here was to bring together a bunch of first and second tier suburbs located to the east of downtown Phoenix together in a district. The district is comprised of West Mesa, Ahwatukee, Chandler, and Southern Scottsdale. I know that Chandler is swingy, and West Mesa is D friendly, but know nothing about Ahwatukee and the portion of Scottsdale in the district.
Arizona’s 8th Congressional District
Demos: 32% White, 3% Black, 5% Native American, 1% Asian, 58% Hispanic, 1% Other
This is a lot like the old 7th, though it sheds La Paz to the 7th, parts of central Tucson (including the University of Arizona) into the 9th. In exchange, it picks up some Hispanic heavy turf in Maricopa in the West Valley and the rest of Sierra Vista, and is in the end, several points more Hispanic than the old district (though what this translates to in VAP is unknown); should send some flavor of Dem back to Congress.
Arizona’s 9th Congressional District
Demos: 73% White, 3% Black, 1% Native American, 3% Asian, 18% Hispanic, 2% Other
Picks up white liberals in Tucson and sheds eastern Cochise and the Sierra Vista portions. The two big military installations are here as a community of interest, along with Eastern Tucson. Gabby would do very well here, but as an open seat I’d guess that it’s still definitely winnable for either party.