Redistricting 2021

Redistricting: What this means to you
 

Every 10 years, Arizona goes through the process of redistricting, drawing new boundaries for Congressional and Legislative maps.

 

Criteria

 

The Arizona constitution identifies six criteria that should be considered in creating fair and balanced maps. The six criteria they must consider are:

  • Equal population;

  • Compactness and contiguousness;

  • Compliance with the U.S. Constitution and the Voting Rights Act;

  • Respect for communities of interest;

  • Incorporation of visible geographic features, including city, town and county boundaries, as well as undivided census tracts; and

  • Creation of competitive districts where there is no significant detriment to other goals.

Legislative Draft Map

The proposed map for our legislative districts shows what could be viewed as gerrymandered Republican districts to the east and west of our current LD1 Maricopa district.

For Anthem/Desert Hills/Tramonto: Proposed LD28 favors Republicans by 30.1%
For Cave Creek/Carefree: Proposed LD3 favors Republicans by 20.4%


A look at the fuller Maricopa County map is also concerning.
The proposed map LD 10.0 for the 20 legislative districts in Maricopa County is distinctly less competitive than the current map.

 

EXPLORE THE DRAFT LEGISLATIVE MAP

(Scroll down on the link that opens for the legislative map)


Current Map
3 relatively competitive districts (7% vote spread) 
17 safe districts: (+4.4R) 
8 Dem (47.3%)
9 GOP (51.7%)

Proposed map LD 10.0
2 relatively competitive districts
18 safe districts (+11%R):
8 Dem (44.5%)
10 GOP (55.5%)

Why is this concerning?

Maricopa County is increasingly diverse and bluer in Democratic party registration. The proposed district configuration would give Republicans an 11% advantage over Democrats in representation in the State legislature despite the GOP having a much smaller party registration advantage of 4.4%.

What can you do?

 

What are the main talking points?

  1. Maricopa is purple. Putting a thumb on the partisan party scale to turn it back to excessively red violates the IRC mandate to create fair and balanced districts.

  2. Safe districts are a form of voter suppression. With 18 safe districts in Maricopa County and 24 safe districts statewide, millions of voters from both parties are disenfranchised in that they will have little chance of running or electing candidates of their choice for the foreseeable future.

  3. More fair and balanced districts will help alleviate the polarization and extremist politics we are experiencing statewide. They also favor more moderate candidates who will have to compete for voters from both parties. They will be able to focus on issues important to all Arizonans— such as water sustainability, climate change remediation, as well as quality, affordable health care and education.

  4. Speaking on behalf of both sides of current LD1 Maricopa, proposed maps for LD3 and LD28 do not reflect our respective communities of interest and are highly uncompetitive. The Commission defined competitive as 4-7% vote spread for new districts. 20.42% and 30.1% exceed this range by double digits. Large vote spreads like this cancel the voice of hundreds of thousands of voters in our two districts and over a million statewide.

  5. To remedy this problem, we propose extending the two sides of current LD1 Maricopa south toward Phoenix, not west of I17 or East of the McDowell Mountains. This respects the suburban nature of our communities and reflects our reliance on health, retail, and entertainment services along the Cave Creek and Tatum Road corridors in urban Phoenix.

  6. We also propose that all 20 proposed districts touching or included in Maricopa County be re-evaluated to achieve partisan vote spreads closer to the 4-7% vote spread. There should be more than 6 competitive districts.

  7. It’s time for the IRC to step up to the challenge of creating maps reflective of the changing demographic and political landscape in Arizona.

  8. The IRC can be a powerful force in lowering the highly partisan temperature and improve the political discourse in this state.

Comparative Maps
Before/After Slider: Draft LD Map vs. Current LD Map

The color Map is the draft map which was approved by the IRC.
The green-outlined map is the current Arizona legislative map.

Hover overlay map

Color map is draft map. Hover mouse cursor over map to see current LD boundaries. 

AZ Maricopa LD map 2021 DRAFT MAP.jpg
AZ Maricopa LD map 2021-2 transparent current districts.png

Writing your testimony

  • Keep it short and to the point. While 3 minutes is the official time allotted, you are likely to be cut down at the last minute to 2 minutes.

  • Practice it and time yourself

  • Be respectful. Thank the Commissioners for listening.

  • Introduce yourself, where you live and for how long

  • Present your main points in support of or in opposition to the proposed map(s)

  • Talk about your community and why the proposed district does not reflect your community’s best interests.

  • Point out how the proposed district does not meet certain criteria, such as geographic barriers (mountains, rivers, major highways), communities of interest such as where you spend most of your business or leisure time or where concerns about water resources and sustainable development and conserving the beauty of the Sonoran desert are shared concerns.

  • Address the issue of competitiveness

  • Arizona is a politically competitive state so maps must reflect Arizona

  • Politically balanced districts protects against extremism, and encourages better representation by legislators and more voter participation

  • Too many safe districts for either party deprives voters of the other party in that district from ever having an opportunity to elect a candidate of their choice

  • Maricopa County constitutes 62% of Arizona’s population and is increasingly diverse. Maps should ensure these populations have a voice in local governance.

  • You should consider testifying in person and/or virtually as well as submitting your comments online.

 

Talking points for public comments

Below are many ideas for points to include in your public comments. You are encouraged to use your own words, your own reasons, and your own circumstances and anecdotes to make your points. Always be kind and respectful.

 

Criteria

 

The Arizona constitution identifies six criteria that should be considered in creating fair and balanced maps. The six criteria they must consider are:

  • Equal population;

  • Compactness and contiguousness;

  • Compliance with the U.S. Constitution and the Voting Rights Act;

  • Respect for communities of interest;

  • Incorporation of visible geographic features, including city, town and county boundaries, as well as undivided census tracts; and

  • Creation of competitive districts where there is no significant detriment to other goals.

 

Statewide

  • Only 6 LDs out of 30 fall within the 7% vote spread between Democrats and Republicans. This spread was adopted by the Arizona Independent Redistricting Commission. But 3 lean Republican and 3 lean Democratic. The Commission can do better than only 6 competitive districts.

  • For the remaining districts, 13 LDs are safe Republican and 11 are safe Democratic.

  • This version of mapping prevents the opportunity for Democrats to reach 50/50 parity or control of the State Legislature.

  • In 24 LD districts, the minority party voters (whether Republican or Democratic) have no chance to elect the candidate of their choice. Republicans cannot elect the candidate of their choice in 11 districts. Democrats cannot elect theirs in 13 districts. The Commission has a responsibility according to state law to establish fair and competitive districts.

  • Fair and competitive districts force candidates to appeal to a broader audience, discourages extremism and encourages honest debate on issues. Better balance encourages elected officials to be more responsive to all their constituents. It also encourages higher voter participation. Most Americans oppose gridlock and want the parties to work together. According to Gallup, 75% of Arizona respondents wanted our legislators to work together to solve problems.

  • The Commission should assure that all the CD and LD districts meet all six Arizona Constitutional criteria. If they do not, then the Commission should explain publicly in detail why not.

  • The 2020 census shows that Arizona is more diverse than 10 years ago and the maps should reflect that reality.

 

Maricopa County

  • The proposed Draft Map reduces the number of competitive districts in Maricopa County, from 3 to 2 and increases the number of safe Republican districts to 10 and keeps Democrats at 8.

  • The Republican advantage does not reflect the increasing diversity of the County.

  • Maricopa County contains over 60% of the state’s population which exemplifies the importance of having fair and balanced maps.

 

Legislative District Draft Map: General

 

  • Maricopa is purple. Putting a thumb on the partisan party scale to turn it back to excessively red violates the IRC mandate to create fair and balanced districts.

  • Safe districts are a form of voter suppression. With 18 safe districts in Maricopa County and 24 safe districts statewide, millions of voters from both parties are disenfranchised in that they will have little chance of running or electing candidates of their choice for the foreseeable future.

  • More fair and balanced districts will help alleviate the polarization and extremist politics we are experiencing statewide. They also favor more moderate candidates who will have to compete for voters from both parties. They will be able to focus on issues important to all Arizonans— such as water sustainability, climate change remediation, as well as quality, affordable health care and education.

  • Speaking on behalf of both sides of current LD1 Maricopa, proposed maps for LD3 and LD28 do not reflect our respective communities of interest and are highly uncompetitive. The Commission defined competitive as 4-7% vote spread for new districts. 20.42% and 30.1% exceed this range by double digits. Large vote spreads like this cancel the voice of hundreds of thousands of voters in our two districts and over a million statewide.

  • To remedy this problem, we propose extending the two sides of current LD1 Maricopa south toward Phoenix, not west of I17 or East of the McDowell Mountains. This respects the suburban nature of our communities and reflects our reliance on health, retail, and entertainment services along the Cave Creek and Tatum Road corridors in urban Phoenix.

  • We also propose that all 20 proposed districts touching or included in Maricopa County be re-evaluated to achieve partisan vote spreads closer to the 4-7% vote spread. There should be more than 6 competitive districts.

  • It’s time for the IRC to step up to the challenge of creating maps reflective of the changing demographic and political landscape in Arizona.

  • The IRC can be a powerful force in lowering the highly partisan temperature and improve the political discourse in this state.

 

Legislative District Draft Map District 3: Cave Creek, Carefree, Eastern LD1

 

Legislative Districts will determine who will represent us in the Arizona State Senate and State House of Representatives.Currently District 3 of the LD draft map is at 39.79% D to 60.21% R is completely uncompetitive. This is compared to the targeted 46.5 to 53 vote spread that the Commission approved. Our redistricting team developed a legislative map here which you can use to determine your comments.

 

Redistricting Talking Points specifically for Cave Creek and Carefree Residents

  • I’ve lived in __________for _____ years. I’ve never had a chance to elect a candidate of my choice in the state legislature.

  • Define your community of interest (COI) which can include where your work, play, receive services, shop, go to school or church, etc.

  • Competitiveness: The proposed LD3 favors Republicans by 20.4%. What we want is a district that is no more than a 7% vote spread. Our community of interest includes Carefree and Cave Creek and follows a corridor south along Cave Creek and Tatum roads.

 

Legislative District Draft Map District 28: Anthem, New River, Desert Hills, Tramonto, Western LD1

 

Legislative Districts will determine who will represent us in the Arizona State Senate and State House of Representatives. District 28, which includes Anthem, New River, Desert Hills, and Tramonto, includes the area north of Peoria to Wickenburg, giving the district a large red majority with a 65R/35D split. Our goal is to have the Commission not include us in a district with rural areas west of Phoenix, but instead to keep us with our community of interest going south down I-17, for a more fair and competitive district, to keep our community together, and to make engaging with our district voters easier.

 

Recommended comments:

  • Anthem shouldn't be in a district with Wickenburg, Wittman, and rural Arizona. These areas have nothing in common.

  • Anthem is a suburb of Phoenix and should be in a district with other nearby suburbs.

  • Anthem is in a community of interest with the areas up and down I-17 north, from New River to north Loop 101, east and west of the freeway. Anthem residents shop, dine, and send our kids to school in neighboring communities along I-17. These areas should be kept together in one district.

  • I thank the Commission for separating our current district from Yavapai County.

  • Please respect the boundaries of precincts and the DVUSD school district.

  • Please move D28 district boundaries south rather than west or east.

  • To keep elections more politically competitive, D28 should go down I-17 to or beyond the northern Loop 101.

  • D28 is uncompetitive due to going west-east instead of south. Please make D28 a more competitive district.

 

Congressional Draft Map

We are focusing on the legislative map as our Congressional District 1 as drawn is a fair map. But you may still submit comments.

EXPLORE THE DRAFT MAP

 

Congressional Districts will determine who will represent us in the U.S. House of Representatives. All of LD1 is included in District 1 in the Congressional Draft map. This is actually a relatively fair map, and we should take the time to thank the Commissioners.

 

Recommended comments:

  • I feel that D1 meets a level of competitiveness that is fair and balanced.

  • I commend the Commission on creating a fair and competitive map.

  • Thank you for including (enter your city/town here) in D1, which a far and competitive Congressional District.

  • Thank you for keeping District 1 with Maricopa County and not including my area with Yavapai County.

  • The Commission should assure that all the CD districts meet all six Arizona Constitutional criteria. If they do not, then the Commission should explain publicly in detail why not.

 

We thank you for doing your part to help prevent gerrymandering in Arizona as we fight to give LD1 Democrats like us a voice in upcoming elections.