RedistrictingCongressional districts and government legislative bodies should be apportioned substantially on population. We oppose partisan and racial gerrymandering that strips rights away from voters.
What is Redistricting?
Every 10 years, the U.S. government conducts a census to update information about the population. This information is used to draw the districts used to elect public officials. Redistricting is the process of creating representational district maps for states and local communities. By determining which neighborhoods are included in each mapped boundary, redistricting impacts how our communities are represented in the national, state, and local government. It determines how resources are distributed. When maps are drawn fairly, districts reflect population changes and racial diversity to equitably represent voters.
People Powered Fair Maps
The League of Women Voters supports People Powered Fair Maps™ to create fair and transparent, people-powered redistricting processes that eliminate partisan and racial gerrymandering, which is the manipulation of the redistricting process to create or maintain the power of politicians. The Baltimore County League is committed to ensuring that maps are drawn transparently and with full public participation to protect communities of interest.
How maps are drawn impacts many important issues, including voting rights, criminal justice reform, climate, and health care. It is important that district maps are truly representative of all communities, so everyone can vote for leaders who prioritize their needs. That is why it is vital for the voices of voters to be included in the process. The County Council is responsible for drawing lines for new districts in a way that represents residents fairly. The process should be overhauled to allow for more public input and transparency in creating new districts to ensure fair maps.
Stay up-to-date with Redistricting News and let the Maryland Citizens' Redistricting Commission know where you stand.
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What Does My Map Look Like?
Congressional Districts Map (Federal Level Representatives)
Legislative Districts Interactive Map (State Level Representatives)
NAACP Baltimore County/ACLU Redistricting Lawsuit Statement
Letter to the Editor in The Sun
In the fall of 2021, League members followed the progress of the five-member bipartisan Councilmanic Redistricting Commission tasked with drawing a new map. The League identified problems with the proposed map, and testified against it at County Council meetings. As part of the Baltimore County Coalition for Fair Maps, we advocated to increase the majority-minority districts to comply with the Voting Rights Act with two Black districts and one BIPOC district; keep communities together (especially Towson and Woodlawn, respectively), and to be explicit in asking the council for an open and transparent process. We rallied and we testified, but the County Council accepted the redistricting map recommended by the redistricting commission.
In December 2021, the LWVBCo joined the Baltimore County branch of the NAACP, Common Cause Maryland, and individual plaintiffs to file a federal lawsuit that challenged the racially discriminatory and unlawful redistricting plan adopted by the Baltimore County Council on Dec. 20, 2021. The coalition believed the maps violated the 15th Amendment of the Constitution, as well as the Voting Rights Act.
The case was heard in federal court by Judge Lydia Kay Griggsby, who granted a preliminary injunction blocking the implementation of the County’s plan and ordering them to submit a new plan that complied with the Voting Rights Act in March 2022. The map submitted and accepted by Judge Griggsby did not include a second majority Black district, instead creating a white plurality in District 2.
The League and our co-plaintiffs were disappointed in the ruling, which does not go far enough to give Black voters, who make up one third of the population, equal representation in County government. Because of the long history of racial inequality in Baltimore County, it is imperative that Black voters have the opportunity to elect candidates of their choice.
These challenges faced by Black residents are the result of a long history of discriminatory laws, including voter suppression. The League will continue to work for equal representation and to challenge systemic inequality in Baltimore County.
LWVUS on Redistricting
Congressional districts and government legislative bodies should be apportioned substantially on population. We oppose partisan and racial gerrymandering that strips rights away from voters. We promote transparent and accountable redistricting processes and work to end hyper-partisan practices that don't benefit constituents. We believe responsibility for fair redistricting should be vested in an independent special commission, with membership that reflects the diversity of the voters.
The League works in states across the country to pass ballot initiatives to institute independent redistricting commissions.