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Pennsylvania's congressional districts

Current district boundaries

After the 2000 Census, the Commonwealth of Pennsylvania was divided into 19 Congressional Districts, decreasing from 21 due to reapportionment. After the 2010 Census, the number of districts decreased again to 18.

On January 22, 2018, the Pennsylvania Supreme Court ruled that the Congressional Districts were an unlawful partisan gerrymander in violation of the Pennsylvania Constitution.[1] The General Assembly and governor failed to reach an agreement for a revised district map. Therefore, on February 19, 2018, the Pennsylvania Supreme Court released a new congressional map.[2] That map is estimated to have a partisan balance of 10 Republican-leaning and 8 Democratic-leaning seats.[3]

The court-mandated map was set to apply beginning with the primary elections on May 15, 2018.[4] Republican lawmakers in the state asked for a stay from the United States Supreme Court[3] and brought suit in federal court, seeking an injunction against using the court-drawn map in the upcoming congressional elections.[5] Both attempts failed on March 19, 2018, following rulings by the Supreme Court and a Pennsylvania federal district court.[6]

Contents

Current districts and representativesEdit

The congressional delegation from Pennsylvania consists of 18 members. In the current delegation, 9 representatives are Republicans and 9 are Democrats. Prior to the 2018 House elections, the Republicans had held 12 seats to 6 for the Democrats, and prior to the March 2018 special election in the 18th district, the delegation had consisted of 13 Republicans and 5 Democrats.

The list below identifies the members of the Pennsylvanian United States House delegation, their service start dates, and current court-ordered district boundaries.

District 2017 PVI Incumbent District map
Representative Party Hometown Beginning of service
1st R+1



Brian Fitzpatrick

Republican Levittown January 3, 2017
(from 8th)
 
2nd D+25



Brendan Boyle

Democratic Philadelphia January 3, 2015
(from 13th)
 
3rd D+41



Dwight Evans

Democratic Philadelphia November 14, 2016
(from 2nd)
 
4th D+7   Madeleine Dean Democratic Abington Township January 3, 2019  
5th D+13   Mary Gay Scanlon Democratic Swarthmore November 13, 2018
(from 7th)
 
6th D+2   Chrissy Houlahan Democratic Devon January 3, 2019  
7th D+1   Susan Wild Democratic South Whitehall Township November 27, 2018
(from 15th)
 
8th R+1   Matt Cartwright Democratic Moosic January 3, 2013
(from 17th)
 
9th R+14   Dan Meuser Republican Dallas January 3, 2019  
10th R+6   Scott Perry Republican Harrisburg January 3, 2013
(from 4th)
 
11th R+14   Lloyd Smucker Republican West Lampeter Township January 3, 2017
(from 16th)
 
12th R+17   Fred Keller Republican Middlecreek Township June 3, 2019  
13th R+22   John Joyce Republican Altoona January 3, 2019  
14th R+14   Guy Reschenthaler Republican Jefferson Hills January 3, 2019  
15th R+20   Glenn Thompson Republican Oil City January 3, 2009
(from 5th)
 
16th R+8   Mike Kelly Republican Butler January 3, 2011
(from 3rd)
 
17th R+3   Conor Lamb Democratic Mt. Lebanon April 12, 2018
(from 18th)
 
18th D+13   Mike Doyle Democratic Pittsburgh January 3, 1995
(from 14th)
 

2012 redistricting and gerrymandering challengeEdit

 
Delegation affiliation following 2012 elections:
Red – Republicans (13)
Blue – Democrats (5)

Following the 2010 Census, redistricting in Pennsylvania was controlled by elected officials from the Republican party. In 2012, Pennsylvania realigned a number of districts. A number of sitting Congressional Representatives had their districts modified or merged as part of the redistricting. The merger of Districts 4 and 12 forced a primary runoff between the two sitting Congressional representatives.[7]

The 2012 redistricting process resulted in a map that disproportionately favored Republican candidates. In the 2012 Congressional elections, Democratic candidates won 50.5% of the total votes cast.[8] However, only five of the state's 18 Federal Representatives (27.78%) were Democrats.[9]

On June 14, 2017, the League of Women Voters of Pennsylvania filed a lawsuit, alleging that the district boundaries constituted an unconstitutional partisan gerrymander.[10] The case was eventually appealed to the Pennsylvania Supreme Court. On January 22, 2018, the Pennsylvania Supreme Court ruled that the Congressional Districts were unlawfully gerrymandered in violation of the Pennsylvania Constitution.[1] The court ordered the General Assembly and the governor to adopt a remedied map, to be used for the 2018 Congressional elections.[1] Pennsylvania Republicans requested a stay from the United States Supreme Court, to delay the drawing of new district boundaries; however, that request was denied on February 5, 2018.[11] The governor and General Assembly failed to reach an agreement regarding the district boundaries, thus the Pennsylvania Supreme Court drew its own remedial map.[12]

On February 19, 2018, the Pennsylvania Supreme Court released a new congressional map, to take effect for the May 15, 2018, primaries.[13] The Court voted to implement the new map by a 4–3 vote.[14] The map was designed with the assistance of Stanford University law professor Nathaniel Persily.[15] The districts in the Court's map were significantly more compact, and its map split fewer municipalities and counties than the prior Republican-drawn map.[16] While the GOP-drawn map had favored Republican candidates, the court-drawn map is expected not to favor one party over the other.[17]

Republican lawmakers from Pennsylvania requested that the Supreme Court block the implementation of the court-drawn map; however, on March 19, 2018, the United States Supreme Court denied their request.[18] A Pennsylvania federal district court dismissed a parallel suit on the same day.[6]

Historical district boundariesEdit

See alsoEdit

ReferencesEdit

  1. ^ a b c The Associated Press. "Pa. Supreme Court rules state's congressional districts are unconstitutional". Retrieved January 22, 2018.
  2. ^ Lai, Jonathan; Navratil, Liz (February 19, 2018). "Pa. gerrymandering case: State Supreme Court releases new congressional map for 2018 elections". Philadelphia Inquirer. 2018 Philadelphia Media Network (Digital), LLC. Retrieved February 20, 2018.
  3. ^ a b Christopher Ingraham. "Pennsylvania Republicans lost the redistricting battle. Now, they're declaring war on the courts". Retrieved March 18, 2018.
  4. ^ Manchester, Julia. "Pennsylvania Supreme Court releases new congressional map". The Hill. Retrieved February 19, 2018.
  5. ^ David DeKok. "Pennsylvania Republicans make case for scrapping new Congress map". Retrieved March 18, 2018.
  6. ^ a b Joseph Ax (March 19, 2018). "Supreme Court upholds Pennsylvania congressional map in win for Democrats". Reuters.
  7. ^ "Pa's New Congressional Maps". www.politicspa.com.
  8. ^ Wang, Sam (December 5, 2015). "Opinion - Let Math Save Our Democracy" – via www.nytimes.com.
  9. ^ "2012 Pennsylvania House Election Results". Politico. Politico LLC. Retrieved October 9, 2014.
  10. ^ Marc Levy. "Pennsylvania's US House district borders challenged in court". The Morning Call. Retrieved November 19, 2017.
  11. ^ Mark Scolforo and Mark Sherman. "US Supreme Court Won't Block Pennsylvania Redistricting". Retrieved February 5, 2018.
  12. ^ John Finnerty. "Supreme Court will get to pick new map for state's congressional districts". Retrieved February 26, 2018.
  13. ^ Lozano, Alicia Victoria (February 19, 2018). "Pennsylvania Court Issues New Congressional Map". NBC 10: NBC Philadelphia. 2018 NBCUniversal Media, LLC. Retrieved February 19, 2018.
  14. ^ Lai, Jonathan; Navratil, Liz (February 19, 2018). "Pa. gerrymandering case: State Supreme Court releases new congressional map for 2018 elections". Philadelphia Inquirer. 2018 Philadelphia Media Network (Digital), LLC. Retrieved February 20, 2018.
  15. ^ Previti, Emily; Meyer, Katie (February 19, 2018). "In Pennsylvania, New Court-Drawn Voting Map Could Shift Advantage To Democrats". National Public Radio. Retrieved May 4, 2018.
  16. ^ Ingraham, Christopher (February 20, 2018). "Pennsylvania Supreme Court draws 'much more competitive' district map to overturn Republican gerrymander". Washington Post. Retrieved May 4, 2018.
  17. ^ Cohn, Nate; Bloch, Matthew; Quealy, Kevin. "The New Pennsylvania Congressional Map, District by District". New York Times.
  18. ^ Lai, Jonathan; Navratil, Liz (March 19, 2018). "Supreme Court upholds new Pa. congressional district map, rejecting Republican challenge - Philly". Philly.com.

External linksEdit