Chambers congressional district will be unaffected by new map

Published 8:30 am Friday, July 28, 2023

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After a week of debating, the Alabama legislature voted to enact the Livingston Congressional Plan 3 during the conference committee on July 21. 

The selected map changes all seven congressional districts, with District 7 being decreased from about 55% to just over 50% minority population. Whereas District 2 will have about 40% minority population. 

“The court’s order was for us to have two districts that would actually have an opportunity as far as a minority [candidate] to [win],” said Senator Randy Price, who represents Chambers, Lee, Randolph, Cleburne and Clay counties. 

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“District 2 is south of us starting in Macon and Russell and going all the way down to the Florida[line],” Price said. “And then District 7 is starting in Jefferson, and most of West Alabama.”

District 7 is the existing Democratic seat held by Rep Terri Sewell. The district begins with Jefferson County and moves through west Alabama. District 2 consists of Macon and Russell County, two counties which formerly belonged to District 3, where Chambers and Lee County are located.

“As far as us here at home, we basically kept our district intact and really did not see some major changes,” Price said. “We had a few counties like Russell and Macon that were in District 3 that are now in District 2.”

This comes after the U.S. Supreme Court ruled in June that the 2021 congressional map violated Section 2 of the Voting Rights Act of 1985. The federal court held the opinion that the map diluted minority votes and needed to be redrawn with one majority-minority district and one equal opportunity district. 

Alabama’s population is 27% Black but the majority of the Black population is centered on a number of counties concentrated in the Black Belt. The Supreme Court’s decision was in the interest of the voters of the Black Belt. 

With a 75-28 vote in the House and 24-6 vote in the Senate, the new map passed and will be sent for review from the three-judge panel in Birmingham Aug. 14.

“That is down to the court’s decision,” Price said. “… And they will review what we’ve presented to them, and we’ll go from there.”