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Which states could get new congressional maps in 2024?

An updating tracker of developments in midcycle redistricting.

After the 2020 census, each state redrew its congressional district lines (if it had more than one seat) and its state legislative districts. 538 closely tracked how redistricting played out across the country ahead of the 2022 midterm elections. So everything is done and dusted, right?

Not so fast, my friend. More than a half-dozen states face the prospect of having to go through the redistricting process again, mostly due to federal and/or state litigation over racial or partisan gerrymandering concerns. Both Democrats and Republicans have the opportunity to flip seats in districts drawn more favorably than they were last cycle. For example, Democrats appear poised to pick up at least one seat in Alabama and could theoretically get more favorable maps in Louisiana and Georgia. Republicans, meanwhile, could benefit from more favorable 2024 maps in North Carolina and New Mexico.

We’ll be using this page to relay major developments in midcycle redistricting, such as new court rulings and district maps, and examine how they could affect the political landscape as we move deeper into the 2024 election cycle. We’ll predominantly focus on congressional maps, but will share the occasional key update on conflicts over state legislative districts.


South Carolina will use its old congressional map in 2024

Time's up, Supreme Court! That's what a panel of three federal judges declared on Thursday, as they decided that South Carolina must use the congressional map it used in 2022 in the 2024 election as well.

The panel had previously struck down South Carolina's 1st District as a racial gerrymander because it did not have enough Black voters, which had turned the one-time swing district into a more safely Republican seat. However, Republicans appealed that ruling to the Supreme Court, which has been sitting on the case for months. The three-judge panel finally decided that it was too late to make any changes for 2024, given that Monday is the deadline for congressional candidates to file to run. As a result, Democrats will miss out on a chance to flip another district in their favor this year.


Wisconsin won’t get a new congressional map

On Friday, the Wisconsin Supreme Court declined to hear a challenge to the state's congressional map. The order was a blow to Democrats, who had argued that the map unfairly advantaged Republicans. It was also unexpected after liberals took control of the court with the election of Janet Protasiewicz in April 2023; Protasiewicz did not participate in the order.

As a result, Wisconsin will use its current congressional map, which has six Republican-leaning seats and two Democratic-leaning seats, in the 2024 election.


New York passes a largely unchanged congressional map

This week, New York's Democratic-controlled legislature took up the congressional map proposed by the state's bipartisan redistricting commission … and largely left it unchanged.

On Monday, after the legislature voted down the commission's proposal, many people assumed they would replace it with an aggressive Democratic gerrymander that would help the party in its quest to flip the U.S. House. But that's not what happened. Instead, the legislature passed a map with only minor tweaks from the commission's, which in turn was pretty close to the old congressional map drawn by a court-appointed special master in 2022.

Based on the results of the 2020 presidential election, no district will shift by more than 4 percentage points of margin. The biggest change is in the 22nd District, which now would have voted for Biden by 11 points, making it harder for Republican Rep. Brandon Williams to win reelection. Democratic Reps. Tom Suozzi and Pat Ryan also got a little safer in their districts, while the legislature also did a favor for Republican Rep. Nick LaLota, turning his 1st District from a narrow Biden district to a narrow Trump district.

Gov. Kathy Hochul signed the new map into law on Wednesday night.



Wisconsin’s legislature is competitive again

We've largely stuck to covering congressional redistricting in this space, but over the weekend there was a pretty huge development in state-legislative redistricting that's worth noting. Wisconsin Gov. Tony Evers signed a new set of state Senate and Assembly maps into law that will suddenly make Wisconsin's legislature — which has been dominated by Republicans for over a decade — competitive again.

Back in December, the state Supreme Court ruled that Wisconsin's old legislative maps were unconstitutional because they were not contiguous. The court asked Evers and the legislature to enact a new map, or else it would pick one for them. Normally, the Democratic Evers and the Republican legislature don't see eye to eye on anything, but when Evers's proposed maps turned out to be slightly better for Republicans than the other maps the court was considering, Republican legislators begrudgingly voted to pass them. (Ironically, most Democrats in the legislature voted against them.)

Still, the new maps are dramatically better for Democrats than the old ones. Under the old Assembly map, Trump carried 64 districts in 2020 and Biden carried 35. Under the new map, Trump would have carried 50 districts and Biden 49. And under the old Senate map, Trump carried 22 districts to Biden's 11. Under the new map, Biden would have carried 18 districts over Trump's 15.

All districts in the Assembly will be on the ballot this fall, giving Democrats a real chance to win control of the chamber for the first time since 2008. However, Republicans will remain strong favorites in the Senate because only half of the seats there (the even-numbered ones) will be up for election. The senators who aren't up for reelection include 12 Republicans and five Democrats, so Republicans need to win only five seats this fall to secure another majority in the 33-person chamber. That should be no sweat considering that there are elections this fall in six Senate districts that Trump would have carried by at least 10 points.


Analyzing North Carolina’s proposed congressional maps

On Wednesday, North Carolina Republicans released two proposed congressional maps for the 2024 cycle, both of which strongly favor the GOP and would allow the party to flip three or four House seats from Democrats.

North Carolina’s congressional delegation currently consists of seven Republicans and seven Democrats, but the first proposed map creates 10 reliably Republican seats, three reliably Democratic seats and one competitive seat. The second proposal is even more aggressive, creating 11 Republican-leaning districts and three Democratic-leaning ones.

Both maps would likely doom the reelection chances of Democratic Reps. Kathy Manning, Wiley Nickel and Jeff Jackson. The first proposal would also make it harder, though not impossible, for Democratic Rep. Don Davis to win reelection, moving his district from one that voted for President Biden by 7 percentage points to one that voted for Biden by just 2. The second proposal would merge Davis and Democratic Rep. Valerie Foushee into the same safely Democratic seat (the 1st District), so one of them would have to retire or lose in a primary.

The North Carolina legislature will discuss these proposals in committee on Thursday, but it’s unclear when they will be voted upon or which plan (if either) will eventually be enacted. In North Carolina, the governor does not have veto power over redistricting maps, so the Republican-controlled Senate and House will have free rein to pass whichever map they can agree on. Democrats may sue over the eventual map, however, especially if the legislature picks the more aggressive proposal. That map dilutes the share of the Black voting age population in the 1st District from 41 percent to 39 percent and could be vulnerable to a legal challenge under the Voting Rights Act.