By Karen Cross, National Right to Life Political Director
Editor’s note. This story appears on page seven of the new digital edition of National Right to Life News. Please share its entire contents with your pro-life family and friends. Please send your comments to me at email@example.com.
Every ten years following the U.S. Census, new Congressional district lines are drawn and electors to the Electoral College are reapportioned for presidential elections. The COVID pandemic has delayed the process for the 2020 Census. The U.S. Census Bureau announced that it would deliver redistricting data to the states by September 30, 2021, requiring states to postpone their redistricting efforts. Redistricting will have a huge impact on the outlook for the U.S. House and future presidential elections.
The following is a look ahead; the actual results will reflect the 2020 Census and legislative action or direction of the nonpartisan commissions that determine congressional district lines.
The U.S. House
In 2020, despite predictions that Democrats would pick up at least 10 more seats in the House, Republicans flipped 15 seats, narrowing the Democratic majority to just a few seats. In fact, the majority held by Democrat, all of whom are pro-abortion, is the most narrow a party has held in over 100 years.
In 2022, with newly redrawn Congressional districts, Republicans , who are almost all pro-life, have a solid opportunity to retake the majority.
Texas alone, which some predict could gain as many as three House seats when new congressional lines are drawn, could put Republicans well on their way to retaking the majority. Texas Republicans control both the legislature and the governorship giving them a huge advantage in drawing the new district lines.
Many are also predicting Florida could pick up two seats, another state where Republicans control the legislature and governorship.
While Arizona and Montana, which are each expected to pick up a seat, have Republican-controlled legislatures and Republican governors, their district lines are drawn through nonpartisan commissions.
In North Carolina, another state expected to pick up a seat in the House of Representatives, the state legislature has the power to draw up the maps and the governor does not have veto power. Republicans control the North Carolina House and Senate while pro-abortion Governor Roy Cooper is a Democrat.
A previously drawn redistricting plan was rejected by the courts, which resulted in Democrats winning two additional seats in 2018.
Similar to the situation in North Carolina, Democrats in Pennsylvania gained an additional seat after the courts rejected the initial redistricting plan. The Keystone State is expected to lose a seat heading into the 2022 elections. While the General Assembly has the authority to draw the district lines, the map is subject to the governor’s veto. Republicans hold the House and Senate majorities but pro-abortion Democrat Tom Wolf is currently the state’s governor.
West Virginia, a state that shifted heavily Republican over the last two decades, is expected to lose a seat. This would inevitably mean the loss of a Republican seat as currently all three Congressional districts in the state are held by Republicans. There is the reverse situation in Rhode Island, which is set to lose a seat, and a Democrat would definitely lose a seat since both Members of the House are Democrats.
Another state to watch is New York, which could lose two seats. Democrats control the legislature and governorship and could draw the map to make districts harder for Republicans. The same could happen in Illinois, which is expected to lose one seat.
Regardless of the district lines, it’s important to be involved. Remember, in 2020, we won a pro-life seat in Iowa’s second congressional district by just six votes!