Lawmakers hold public meetings ahead of drawing new voting district lines

Posted at 7:00 AM, Sep 30, 2019
and last updated 2019-09-30 08:00:32-04

AUSTIN, TX — Lawmakers in Austin are asking for public input ahead of redrawing voting district lines in 2021.

New state and federal voting district lines are drawn every 10 years, according to Census data.

However, due to a June Supreme Court decision, which bars challenges to partisan gerrymandering, legislators will draw new lines without Federal oversight.

In 2011, a Federal court ruled that Texas had unfairly drawn district lines disadvantaging racial minorities.

But, with Federal oversight removed from the process in 2021, A&M Central Texas Professor Dr. Jeffrey Dixon says that more district lines will be even more susceptible to political influence.

"For example, Austin is represented by six different districts. Many of which have large rural areas attached to them, so that the Austin vote is diluted considerably," Dr. Dixon said.

In an effort to demonstrate transparency, the redistricting committee is holding field meetings around the state prior to drawing the new voting district lines.