State Democrats Call Republican Districting Proposal 'Textbook Case Of Gerrymandering'


Tuesday, November 16th 2021, 7:06 am
By: Jordan Dafnis


OKLAHOMA CITY -

Democrats at the Oklahoma State Capitol say they are unhappy with how Republicans want to re-configure Oklahoma’s congressional voting districts.  

The maps are drawn and Republicans have the votes to move forward but Democrats are pushing back by introducing their own plan. 

Their plan makes slight changes to the existing district lines. 

The proposal will be heard in the Senate Redistricting Committee on Tuesday morning. 

Senate Democrats argue that the Republican’s proposed map dilutes the Hispanic community on the south side of the Oklahoma City metro, placing them in the same district as the panhandle. 

Democrats are calling it a “textbook case of gerrymandering.” Republicans argue that the community has had the opportunity to put in their input. 

"This map is very much based off of public feedback, that was our number one priority is, 'let's act in public what they want what makes sense to them and then let's actually do that,' said Republican Rep. Ryan Martinez of Edmond. 

The issues became a heated debate Monday at an afternoon press conference. With the maps likely to pass along party-line votes Democrats like Democratic Minority Leader Rep. Emily Virgin, say they're keeping their options open to fight the changes. 

"We're considering all the options at this point and that is certainly one of them taking this to court," said Virgin. 

The maps are expected to be on the governor's desk by Friday.