Massachusetts enacts new congressional district maps

Massachusetts enacted new congressional districts on Nov. 22 when Gov. Charlie Baker (R) signed a proposal approved by the legislature into law. Massachusetts was apportioned nine seats in the U.S. House of Representatives after the 2020 census, no change from after the 2010 census. The map will take effect for the state’s 2022 congressional elections.

Both chambers of the legislature approved the new maps on Nov. 17. The state House approved the plan by a vote of 151-8 with 127 Democrats, 23 Republicans, and one independent voting in favor and six Republicans and two Democrats voting against. The state Senate approved the new congressional maps 26-13, with 24 Democrats and two Republicans voting in favor and 12 Democrats and one Republican opposed. In the previous redistricting cycle, Massachusetts adopted its congressional map almost ten years ago to the day—on Nov. 21, 2011. 

Nik DeCosta-Klipa wrote at after the legislature approved the maps, “unlike the partisan redistricting fights happening across much of the country, the map has been an argument among Democrats in reliably-blue Massachusetts. While the proposal does not dramatically alter the general contours of the state’s nine Democrat-held House districts…some of the tweaks around the edges have elicited vocal — to some, surprising — outcry.” According to Chris Lisinski of the State House News Service, “The new district boundaries put Fall River fully in the 4th Congressional District and keep New Bedford in the 9th District. Debate over the fate of the two South Coast cities split elected officials, who offered competing arguments for combining them into a single district and for keeping the region divided across two districts.”

As of Nov. 23, 17 states have adopted new congressional maps, one state’s legislature has approved congressional district maps that have not yet taken effect, six states were apportioned one congressional district (so no congressional redistricting is required), and 26 states have not yet adopted new congressional maps. As of this date in 2011, 27 states had enacted congressional redistricting plans.

States have completed congressional redistricting for 142 of the 435 seats (32.6%) in the U.S. House of Representatives.

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