Democrats call on Gov. Wolf to reject new congressional map

HARRISBURG, Pa. (WHTM) — State Republican leaders submitted their new congressional map to Gov. Tom Wolf on Friday. The GOP says their map is constitutional and complies with the state Supreme Court’s order. Democratic leaders, however, are calling for the governor to reject it.

GOP leaders submitted the new map as a replacement for the 2011 map the Supreme Court ruled unconstitutional.

Suzanne Almeida is the executive director of the League of Women Voters in Pennsylvania, the organization which brought a lawsuit against the 2011 map to the high court.

“We’re excited that something was submitted,” Almeida said. “That is a step in the process, but it’s really just not good enough.”

Almeida says the new map contains some of the same problems as the old map.

“We’re still seeing too many splits, too much gerrymandering, too much partisan imbalance,” she said.

Democratic leaders sent a letter to the governor on Friday, saying the map was not the product of bipartisan work.

Val DiGiorgio is with the Republican Party of Pennsylvania. He worries Democrats are trying to get their own partisan map passed.

“This really isn’t about, in our estimation, drawing more compact seats, DiGiorgio said. “That’s a ruse to be used for a plan to really just get more Democrat seats.”

A Stanford University professor has already been retained by the Supreme Court to consult on the redrawing. Meanwhile, the battle over the redraw is now moving to social media. House Speaker Mike Turzai asked, “When will the Governor and Democrats release their maps to the public?” State Representative Frank Dermody firing back, “When will lawmakers be called into session to have a vote on a map?”

Things will have to move quickly. The GOP plan is on the governor’s desk, and he has three days to approve it. If he doesn’t, the state Supreme Court will adopt its own plan.

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