Redistricting maps upset both political parties
New district boundaries have a big influence on who is elected. Neither party is very happy with the maps as they stand now Video by kgun9.comvideo
Lynne St. Angelo of the Saddlebrook Republican Club says republicans are upset Saddlebrook and Oro Valley have been split from the Congressional Distract that includes Tucson and thrown in a huge district that runs north of Flagstaff
Democratic State Senator Olivia Cajero-Bedford thinks the Redistricting Commission based the maps too much on U.S. Census data and not enough on communities with common interests
Reporter: Craig Smith
TUCSON (KGUN9-TV) - Special maps have a lot to say about who represents you in Congress and the state legislature.
They're adjusted every ten years for shifts in the population and the new maps have managed to aggravate members of both political parties.
When the lines of the political maps move around you may find yourself in a different district---choosing among different candidates than the ones you've voted for in the past.
Arizona voters approved an independent redistricting commission to draw the lines, instead of letting state lawmakers do it.
The idea is a commission with two from each party, with an registered independent as chair would be less likely to draw lines to favor one party.
Republicans tried and failed to remove independent chair Colleen Mathis. They claimed she sided too often with the Democrats.
But the maps the commission approved are upsetting Republicans and Democrats.
Republicans in Saddlebrook and Oro Valley feel they have enough in common with Tucsonans to stay in the same congressional district with Tucson. But they're not. The redistricting commission put them in a huge district that sprawls north past Flagstaff.
Oro Valley resident Lynne St. Angelo is a member of the Saddle Brook Republican Club. Talking about slicing Saddlebrook and Oro Valley from the Congressional district that includes Tucson, she says,
"So the concerns that Southern Arizonans have are very different from Northern Arizona and probably the person who's gonna come out of this district is gonna come from Northern Arizona."
As for lines on the state lawmaker level, Democratic State Senator Olivia Cajero Bedford says now the people she represents in the Tucson Mountains are lumped in a state legislative district that includes Saddlebrook and Oro Valley.
Just as Saddlebrook residents don't want to be split from Tucson, she's seeing the new lines split neighborhoods a few blocks at a time.
She says, "It was a part of the total neighborhood. They just removed it, four blocks by four blocks, which logically doesn't sound right for the neighborhood."
Senator Cajero Bedford thinks the commission thought more about census numbers than keeping together groups of people with things in common.
She says the new lines carved her out of the district she's represented for years. She says to run for re-election she'll move to another house she owns in the area she's been representing.
People upset about the maps may have some chance to change them. The maps are not truly final until the US Justice department rules they do not interfere with the ability of minorities to elect candidates, so the Justice Department may lead to some adjustments; and there's always the option of suing.