SALEM, Ore. – On Monday the Oregon Legislature will begin a special legislative session to adopt a new congressional district map. Every decade, the Oregon Constitution requires the state to look at redistributing.
Two weeks ago, initial drafts were released to the public. Now legislators are voting on one congressional map. Legislators should have voted on this issue by july first, but the U.S. Census results were delayed by the pandemic. That’s key to setting the new districts.
“Are you able to draw those maps in a way that keeps people with common interests together, which is really the objective. I think we’ll hear more comments from them. I will say I think they’ve done a good job to what I know so far,” said State Rep. Pam Marsh (D).
But the map may not get bipartisan support. Democrats said they’re going through the process fairly, but Republicans said they’re looking to benefit their party.
“I don’t believe that map is responsive to that testimony that has been gathered around the state. I think there’s a lot of problems with the map,” said State Rep. Kim Wallan (R).
The deadline to complete redistricting plans is September 27, 2021. If legislators can’t decide by then it’ll be sent to Democratic Secretary of state Shemia Fagan.
Committee meetings start Monday at 8 a.m. You can watch it live on oregonlegislature.gov.