Very quick thoughts on new Congressional Districts

Darcy Burner gets her wish … and doesn’t.

Yes, her home is located in the 1st District. And yes, she’ll be in a no-incumbent CD. But no, it doesn’t much overlap with what had been Jay Inslee’s District. Most of it is what had been represented by Rick Larsen, who now has much of the former Inslee CD (and a safe Democratic seat).

I don’t know how most of the other 1st CD prospects made out.

Off the top of my head, I’d say that Marko Liias struck out … he’s almost surely in the new 2nd, and would have to face Larsen. I don’t know where in Snohomish Steve Hobbs lives. Suzan DelBene is now in the 9th District, with incumbent Adam Smith. The others — Goodman, Ruderman, and others — are still a mystery for me. [CORRECTIONS (12:51pm): If DelBene lives in Medina, she’s actually in WA-01, not WA-09. Roger Goodman is definitely in WA-01. It’s possible that Liias is now in WA-07, not WA-02 (either way, he’s SOL).]

Yes, majority-minority, but …

The redrawn 9th Congressional District is “only” 49.67% non-Hispanic white. However, it already has a well-entrenched incumbent in Adam Smith. And, as I noted yesterday, the voters of the CD will be majority non-Hispanic white.

In terms of cojones, Ceis and Gorton fought to a draw.

It really depends on the new 1st District. They built five Democratic Districts: 2nd (Larsen), 6th (Dicks), 7th (McDermott), 9th (Smith), 10th (Thurston County-based, no incumbent). There are three, maybe four, Republican CDs: the 4th (Hastings), 5th (McMorris Rodgers), and 8th (Reichert) are solid red, and the 3rd (Herrera Beutler) might, but probably doesn’t, have a whisper of a chance for a Democrat to squeeze her out. The new 1st will be the battleground. In a Presidential year, Democratic chances up there probably improve a bit.

More thoughts as I get a better chance to review the maps.

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Comments

  1. 1

    Oly D spews:

    Seems like a win for the R’s to me- 3rd and 8th which were swing are now safe for the R’s and the 1st which was safely D is now swing. D’s only pick up is the new congressional district. One way to look at it is before the redistricting, D’s had a chance in 7 of the 9 congressional districts, but now they only have a shot at 6 out of 10. The r’s should easily hold 4 seats and have a chance at 5

  2. 2

    spews:

    Oly D, on further consideration, I think you’re probably right about WA-03. I’d sorta forgotten that it used to reach up to Thurston County, even to portions of Olympia. That makes it a definitive 5-4-1 tally.

  3. 3

    spews:

    Don’t count out the third yet. Yes, you lose Democratic votes from Olympia, but Vancouver has become more Democratic as it has grown. Plus, Beutler has hardly made a name for herself. A moderate Dem could do well there and keep the district from becoming solid red.

  4. 4

    tensor spews:

    I agree with Oly D and N: this is a terrible map for us liberals. Putting Seattle’s Central District in with Mercer Island and Bellevue makes sense only if the goal is to dilute the liberal vote as much as possible. Get me re-write (or re-draw)!

    (Also, a Member of the US House must reside in the state he or she represents, not the district.)

  5. 5

    YellowPup spews:

    Interesting. Looking at it around my immediate area, it would seem to strengthen deeply contaminated and entrenched incumbents.

    A real boost for the status quo during what might have been a change decade.

  6. 9

    Michael spews:

    The new 8th CD doesn’t seem to make a lot of sense. You’ve got urban westside areas sharing a district with deeply rural east side areas.

  7. 10

    Michael spews:

    Would have made more sense to put Shelton in the 6th and knock Tacoma out of it. But, we’re not trying to be sensible here are we.

  8. 11

    spews:

    Michael @9:

    The thing is that at least one CD has to cross the Cascades. There’s too little population on the dry side to take up two full districts.

    It was always going to be either WA-08 or WA-03 that crossed, with continuity via I-90 or the Columbia, respectively. In the end, the sent both of them across, though WA-08 much more than WA-03.

  9. 12

    rhp6033 spews:

    Wow – I don’t know how much of a change this all is from the previous districting, but there are some odd results.

    Seattle is split pretty much in half (vertically), with the west side of Lake Washington combined with the East Side. Looks like the dividing line is right along the crest of Capital Hill, but I could be wrong. All of Seattle east of that point is combined with Mercer Island and Bellevue in the 9th, which could swamp the district with their money.

    The 7th gets Edmonds, Woodway, and Shoreline, but the 2nd gets Lynnwood, Mountlake Terrace, and Everett. I would have thought Edmonds, Lynnwood, and Mountlake Terrace would have been kept together in the same district.

    Looking further north, the lines do some interesting zig-zags, with the 2nd including Marysville, Arlington, Burlington, and Sedro-Wooley, but with the 1st including Mt. Vernon, Mill Creek, Lake Stevens, Medina, Clyde Hill, and Redmond. If you want to look at the district with the most money held by rich people, that’s definately going to be the one.

  10. 14

    Politically Incorrect spews:

    It looks to me like this 10th district encompasses a lot of the military bases in Pierce County and a lot of the Thurston County area. That’s a odd combination in my view. It’s going to be intersting to see how the retired military and the state government workers make their choice for congress-critter.

  11. 15

    spews:

    rhp6033 @12:

    Seattle is split pretty much in half (vertically), with the west side of Lake Washington combined with the East Side. Looks like the dividing line is right along the crest of Capital Hill, but I could be wrong. All of Seattle east of that point is combined with Mercer Island and Bellevue in the 9th, which could swamp the district with their money.

    You are wrong (sort of). WA-09 doesn’t get any farther north than Madison, topping out at Thomas, so it cuts off only the southern reaches of Capital Hill, and very little of its main commercial district. Most of the WA-09 incursion is into First Hill, the Central District, the ID, and SE Seattle. Even the lakeside portion of Madrona stays in WA-07.

    Downtown and Sodo are in WA-07, as are Belltown, SLU, and everything north of the Ship Canal.

  12. 16

    Perfect Voter spews:

    Am feeling sorry for the folks in Chelan and Kittitas county, what with 83% of the 8th District population located west of the mountains.

    Nobody from the east side can ever get elected in that district, and they will likely see very little of their wet-side Congressman, especially during the winter.

  13. 19

    Christopher Stefan spews:

    @14
    I’m not too worried about WA-10. Most of the population is in North Thurston County which votes very solidly D. SW Pierce isn’t too bad either. It is Eastern Pierce where the crazy conservatives are (dopey Dave’s district).

  14. 20

    Christopher Stefan spews:

    @16
    The alternative would have been to make the 3rd even more red and have it go even further East.

    Still I would have liked to see a Eastern WA district concentrate as many Hispanic voters as possible in a single CD.

    If the WA Democrats would do a serious registration and GOTV drive there are almost enough Hispanics in the current 4th CD to flip the district. That may still be the case but I’d have to look at the new CD in detail to say for sure.

    In any case the state party has really been neglecting Eastern WA in general and Hispanic voters in particular.

  15. 21

    Zotz sez: Fuck, I hope we don't have to live with these delusional morons for much longer... spews:

    WA-06: A potential succession planning silver lining.

    Inclusion of Bainbridge in the 6th may portend a more progressive D than Dicks in the future. Norm’s getting a bit long in the tooth and if the Ds don’t take the House (Armed Services chair), this may be Norm’s last term.

    Keep your eye on Senator Christine Rolfs (D-23rd) who just replaced Rockefeller. Her potential opposition would be Derek Kilmer (D-26th).

    I think Sheldon is out due to his age and business interests. And he’s managed to piss off pretty much everybody in the last couple of years.

    The rest of the electeds (D or R) are unlikely candidates for congress.

  16. 22

    Michael spews:

    Dang, I hadn’t noticed that Bainbridge got switched to the 6th CD. That’s good news and a good solid block of ferry commuters in the 6th! Last I checked that’s about 17000 good solid left of center voters.

    Kilmer’s a great guy, super smart, and has done great work for the 26th LD, but he doesn’t have the balls for D.C. I hope he’s not the pick to replace Dicks.

    LOL… Balls and Dicks.

  17. 23

    spews:

    @22:

    I used to think of Derek as an ideal followup to Dicks, but I agree with you that he’s far too gentle for DC. Besides, he and Jen really do love Gig Harbor (one or both of them grew up there).

    To say nothing of the pangs he’d feel about being away from the little ones so often.

  18. 24

    Puddybud spews:

    So the bottom line is the DUMMOCRAPT congressional incumbents are not whack-job leftist progressive enough for y’all?

  19. 25

    Michael spews:

    @23
    Derek’s from Port Angeles, not sure about Jen.

    @24
    Well that and a chance to say balls and dicks in the same paragraph.

  20. 26

    Chris spews:

    @20 Im not sure how close the 4th is to being flipped, but you have to remember, not all hispanics are Democrats. Its about 60/40. So even if you get 20,000 hispanic voters registered, the Democrats would gain only about 12,000 if the proportions hold. With the Republicans gaining 8,000 under those same proportions, the D’s only get a net gain of about 4,000

    @12
    yeah,splitting Seattle (even if only a bit and having mountlake Terrace, lynnwood and edmonds not in the same district makes NO sense since they are all so similar, expecially Lynwood and Edmonds. I saw earlier on here that the state legislature can tweak the map a bit with a 2/3 vote and only 2% of the districts population being affected. I think the 2/3 vote is possible, but that 2% limit means it cant be fully fixed.

    Also, the map has the numbers for the deviation from the ideal population for each district. Does anyone know what unit the numbers are in. I know that all the districts can’t be within 10 people of the ideal population, so what is the units in? Thousands, tens of thousands? It seems like they could have done a better job on keeping the districts closer in population.

  21. 27

    Chris spews:

    Auto-Scrolling is making editing impossible, but just for readability purposes, there should be a close parentheses after “bit” in my previous comment that starts with “@12.”

  22. 28

    ArtFart spews:

    @9 Meh. Is there any part of King County that can still be called “deeply rural”?

    “Deeply suburban” would be more like it…unless BMW starts building tractors.

    Eastern Pierce and the two counties east of the mountains are another matter.

  23. 29

    David Aquarius spews:

    I live in East Renton, and I never thought I’d see the day when I’m in the same congressional district as my cousin in Entiat.

    Deputy Dave is going to have his hands full catering to all those wingnuts in Chelan Co. Liberals like me will have to go elsewhere for leadership. (like that’s any different)

    I acknowledge the fact that 83% is still in King co. but we have had a bear of a time before, I don’t see that changing with this new map. Personally, I see CD8 becoming more wingnut. Deputy Dave will only lose to another Repug, one that’s more lame and ignorant than he is.

    If that’s even possible.

    CD8 is a safe Repug seat for the foreseeable future.

  24. 30

    spews:

    As an Olympiaite, I’m personally glad to be cut free from the troglodytes of the 3rd district. We were always pretty much an after-thought. At least now the candidates will be focusing most of their attention on us.

  25. 31

    MikeBoyScout spews:

    I think the new CDs are OK. Line drawing is never easy, and I appreciate the process we have in WA especially as it compares to other states.

    But over at (un)Sound the new CD brings us a bonus none of us could have hoped for.

    pudge thoughtfully ruminates:

    …if no white candidates runs in the new 9th District (in the future, since Adam Smith is running in 2012), I am considering doing so myself (even though I am not certain I am actually white, I appear that way to most people), just to give white resident-citizens of the 9th a choice that the designers of this district map seem to think is so important.

    Unpack THAT!

  26. 32

    Michael spews:

    @28

    @9 Meh. Is there any part of King County that can still be called “deeply rural”?

    The new 8th goes over the pass to Kittitas and Chelan counties. That’s what I was referring to.

  27. 33

    spews:

    Chris @26:

    Also, the map has the numbers for the deviation from the ideal population for each district. Does anyone know what unit the numbers are in. I know that all the districts can’t be within 10 people of the ideal population, so what is the units in? Thousands, tens of thousands? It seems like they could have done a better job on keeping the districts closer in population.

    Chris, the unit is unit. As in ones. Yes, the Congressional Districts really do match the ideal count that precisely, just as the 2000 Census CDs did.

    After the 2000 Census, the ideal population for a Congressional District in Washington was 654,902.333. The lowest CD population was in the 3rd District, 654,898. The highest CD population was in the 8th District, 654,905. Thus, the range (highest – lowest) among CDs was seven residents, and no district differed from the ideal by more that 4.333 persons. The maximum deviation from the mean (4.333/654902.333) was 0.00066%. In words, that’s 66 ten-thousandth of one percent.

    There’s absolutely no necessity that they be that precise. Even a deviation of one hundredth of a percent would be approximately plus-or-minus 65, which is plenty accurate enough for me (and for the Feds).

    BTW, the LDs after the 2000 Census weren’t nearly so exact. I’m too lazy to look it up, but I think some of them deviated from the ideal (120,288.184) by as much as 100.

  28. 34

    spews:

    For the record, CD demographics for the Ceis-Gorton map can be found here (PDF). For those who don’t wish to look at that page, it reports that the 6th District is the smallest, at 672,446, and the 4th and 7th Districts are the largest, both at 672,460.

    The ideal population is 672,454, so the maximum deviation is a sky-high (compared to 2000) 0.0012%. IOW, just over one-thousandth of one percent.

  29. 35

    Michael spews:

    After the 2000 Census, the ideal population for a Congressional District in Washington was 654,902.333. The lowest CD population was in the 3rd District, 654,898. The highest CD population was in the 8th District, 654,905. Thus, the range (highest – lowest) among CDs was seven residents, and no district differed from the ideal by more that 4.333 persons. The maximum deviation from the mean (4.333/654902.333) was 0.00066%. In words, that’s 66 ten-thousandth of one percent.

    Dang.

  30. 36

    Lauramae spews:

    I saw that 2 of the candidates expressing interest in the 10th district (one R and one D) are both former Board of Trustees for The Evergreen State College-Flemming and Heck.

    That will entertain me with the severe anti-Evergreen element in Thurston County.

  31. 37

    Michael spews:

    @36

    Fleming and Heck are has beens. Can’t the 10th come up with people that are a little less snore inducing?

  32. 38

    Lauramae spews:

    I would imagine that people can be new and exciting in the 10th. I just don’t know who that would be.

    Maybe Bohmer.