The new redistricting plan released this morning pairs two eastern Iowa Congressman, just like the first plan that was rejected by state legislators. If this second plan for redrawing congressional and legislative districts is endorsed by the legislature and Governor, Congressman Jim Leach of Davenport and Jim Nussle of Manchester would be in the same district, again. Both are republicans. Leonard Boswell of Davis City, the only Iowa democrat in Congress, lives in the plan’s 32-county western Iowa district which stretches from Minnesota to Missouri. Congressman Tom Latham, a republican from Alexander, would be in the plan’s new fourth district which sort of wedges like an upside down pyramid from northern Iowa to Indianola. Latham would represent Marshalltown, Ames, Mason City, Storm Lake and Decorah. Two of the five districts would have open seats. And in an unusual twist, the new central Iowa district would stretch east to west from Williamsburg to Des Moines and north to south from Grundy Center to Chariton. The new second congressional district, which is also an open seat, encompasses Burlington and Cedar Rapids. Republican lawmakers said the first plan had too great a population variation from district to district. The second plan has a median deviation of point-zero-zero-eight, an incredibly tiny fraction of a percent. House Speaker Brent Siegrist, a republican from Council Bluffs, says it’s too soon to say whether Republicans will like the plan.House Republican Leader Christopher Rants of Sioux City is not making any pronouncements, either. He says they’ll have to spend some time looking at the plan before making any judgements. Senate Democrat Leader Mike Gronstal of Council Bluffs spoke to reporters this morning while he looked at the new districts. He says it doesn’t look a lot different from the first proposal in terms of being a competitive fair map. The legislature meets June 16th in a special session to vote on this new plan.Legislators are looking at their own political futures. Twenty-five Senators are paired in primaries; 39 members of the House are paired. PROPOSED NEW FIRST CONGRESSIONAL DISTRICT: Butler, Bremer, Fayette, Clayton, Black Hawk, Buchanan, Delaware, Dubuque, Jones, Jackson, Clinton and Scott. PROPOSED NEW SECOND CONGRESSIONAL DISTRICT: Linn, Johnson, Cedar, Muscatine, Louisa, Washington, Des Moines, Henry, Lee, Van Buren, Jefferson, Wapello, Davis, Appanoose, Wayne. PROPOSED NEW THIRD CONGRESSIONAL DISTRICT: Lucas, Monroe, Marion, Mahaska, Keokuk, Iowa, Poweshiek, Jasper, Polk, Tama, Benton and Grundy. PROPOSED NEW FOURTH CONGRESSIONAL DISTRICT: Warren, Madison, Dallas, Greene, Boone, Story, Marshall, Calhoun, Webster, Hamilton, Hardin, Pocahontas, Humboldt, Wright, Franklin, Palo Alto, Kossuth, Hancock, Cerro Gordo, Floyd, Chickasaw, Emmet, Winnebago, Worth, Mitchell, Howard, Winneshiek, Allamakee. PROPOSED NEW FIFTH CONGRESSIONAL DISTRICT: Lyon, Osceola, Dickinson, Sioux, O’Brien, Clay, Plymouth, Cherokee, Buena Vista, Woodbury, Ida, Sac, Monona, Crawford, Carroll, Harrison, Shelby, Audubon, Guthrie, Pottawattamie, Cass, Adair, Mills, Montgomery, Adams, Union, Clarke, Fremont, Page, Taylor, Ringgold, Decatur.STATE SENATE PAIRINGS: John Redwine, R-Sioux City and Ken Veenstra, R-Orange City; Thurman Gaskill, R-Corwith and Merlin Bartz, R-Grafton; Betty Soukup, D-New Hampton and Mark Zieman, R-Postville; Don Redfern, R-Cedar Falls and Pat Harper, D-Waterloo; Andy McKean, R-Anamosa and Tom Flynn, D-Dubuque; Jerry Behn, R-Boone and JoAnn Johnson, R-Adel; Steve King, R-Kiron and Nary Lou Freeman, R-Alta; Gene Maddox, R-Clive and Mary Kramer, R-West Des Moines; Matt McCoy, D-Des Moines and Dick Dearden, D-Des Moines; Dick Drake, R-Muscatine and Tom Fiegen, D-Clarence; Sheldon Rittmer, R-DeWitt and Pat Deluhery, D-Davenport; David Miller, R-Libertyville, Mark Shearer, D-Washington and Sandra Greiner, R-Keota.STATE HOUSE PAIRINGS: Henry Rayhons, R-Garner and Dennis May, D-Kensett; Steve Sukup, R-Dougherty and Roger Broers, R-Mason City; Chuck Gipp, R-Decorah and Leigh Rekow, R-Postville; Bill Dix, R-Shellrock and Bob Brunkhorst, R-Waverly; Don Shoultz, D-Waterloo and Bill Dotzler, D-Waterloo; Clyde Bradley, R-Camanche and Polly Bukta, D-Clinton; Paul Scherman, D-Farley and Gene Manternach, R-Cascade; Dick Taylor, D-Cedar Rapids and Jeffrey Elgin, R-Cedar Rapids AND Chuck Larson, Junior, R-Cedar Rapids; Jane Greimann, D-Ames and Barbara Finch, R-Ames; Steve Kettering, R-Lake View and Rod Roberts, R-Carroll; Jack Drake, R-Lewis and Dick Weidman, R-Griswold; Janet Metcalf, R-Urbandale and Scott Raecker, R-Urbandale; Wayne Ford, D-Des Moines and Janet Petersen, D-Des Moines; Jack Hatch, D-Des Moines and Ed Fallon, D-Des Moines; Richard Arnould, R-Russell and James Van Engelenhoven, R-Leighton; Danny Carroll, R-Grinnell and Betty DeBoef, R-New Sharon; Barry Brauns, R-Muscatine and James Hahn, R-Muscatine; Phil Wise, D-Keokuk and Rick Larkin, D-Fort Madison; Brad Hansen, R-Carter Lake and Brent Siegrist, R-Council Bluffs. VOTING MARGINS:Democrats would have a voter registration edge in three of the proposed congressional districts, while Republicans would have the edge in two. The new western Iowa fifth district would have a whopping 50-thousand vote margin for Republicans. Democrats would have a 10-thousand vote edge in the new third; an edge of about six thousand in the new first and a 10-thousand vote edge in the new second. Republicans would hold an 11-thousand vote margin in the new fourth.
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