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For any who may be reading this series for the first time: this is a thought experiment where I try to see what would happen if the size of the House of Representatives were doubled to 870 members from 435. This series is both highly theoretical and very unlikely to ever occur.

Maryland was one of few states this redistricting cycle that was favorable to Democrats. Governor O'Malley and Annapolis decided to go after Republican Roscoe Bartlett (as opposed to freshman Andy Harris), ultimately moving the map from a 6-1-1 to a 7-1. In West Virginia, there was some trepidation, as Senate Majority leader John Unger attempted to go after Republicans John McKinley and Shelley Moore Capito by going against the tradition of keeping counties whole in redistricting. Tradition ultimately prevailed. And DC, of course, currently only sends one non-voting delegate to Congress, but I believe current law would still give it two representatives, since it's guaranteed no less than the smallest state.

Links to the adopted plans in Maryland (the hideous gerrymander that it is) and West Virginia.

Previous Doubling Diaries: New England, NE, MO, NC, MI, FL, SC, WI, LA, MS, UT, NV, OK, AK, WY, IN, NJ, VA, OH, HI, ND, SD, NM, VT, DE and ID

Maryland


The Old Line State gets 16 districts.

The Dem Average consists of "All 2006-2008 statewide races"

3
VAP: 41.8 White, 50.4 Black
72.8 Obama, 73.6 Dem

Open; majority black. Based in Prince George's County, it reaches into the Eastern Shore to both dilute the black population (in order to make more majority districts) and the red bastion of the eastern shore. A cinch for a black Democrat. Safe D, black pickup

4
VAP: 67.1 W, 25.3 B
52.7 Obama, 55.4 Dem

Steny Hoyer (D-Mechanicsville) the Minority Whip, lives here. The Southern Tier, basically. Charles and St. Mary's Counties, plus Somerset and Worcester Counties on the Eastern Shore. Hoyer would not like this district, losing 13 points of saftey. Being in the leadership, he could probably win easily no matter what, but depending on the way the district is trending, Hoyer may want to move north to the 3rd, where he already represents the lion's share. Safe D with Hoyer, Lean D if open

5
VAP: 66.9 W, 23.1 B, 5.9 Hispanic
52.7 Obama, 54.5 Dem

Open. The Eastern Shore (including the sole blue city of Salisbury), Annapolis, and into Prince George's County. The capital city of Annapolis is almost always carved up and shoved in with Baltimore, diluting or eliminating its influence. Now, there's a chance for an Annapolis-based Dem to get through the primary. Side note; former Rep. Frank Kratovil lives here, in Stevensville, and could decide to run. Lean D, Likely D with Kratovil

6
VAP: 67.2 W, 20 B, 5.6 H, 5.3 Asian
51.3 Obama, 52.8 Dem

Open. Anne Arundel County and reaching into Prince George's, Howard and MoCo. Theoretically competitive, but Democrats hold most of the local offices. Lean D

12
VAP: 73.6 W, 8 B, 6.6 H, 10 A
64.6 Obama, 65.9 Dem

Chris Van Hollen (D-Kensington), the Ranking Member of the Budget Committee, lives here. MoCo and up towards the panhandle. Not as good as his current district, but better than his district under the new map. Safe D

13
VAP: 73.1 W, 9.4 B, 7.2 H, 8.5 A
54.9 Obama, 53.9 Dem

Roscoe Bartlett (R-Buckeysville) lives here. Frederick, Montgomery and Howard Counties. Bartlett may want to chance it here, it's slightly better than the district he's go this time around. But if he wants an almost sure thing (barring a primary), he'll move north to the 15th. Lean D with Bartlett, Likely D if open.

15
VAP: 90.5 W, 5.2 B
35.7 Obama, 36.5 Dem

Open. The Panhandle, centered in Cumberland and Hagerstown. Like I said, Bartlett may want to move here. Only action would be in the Republican primary. Safe R

16
VAP: 90.3 W
35.5 Obama, 38.1 Dem

Open. The rest of the northern tier and Eastern Shore. Andy Harris, whose home is just barely in the 14th, moves here. Safe R

Baltimore/DC area

1
VAP: 18 W, 54.3 B, 20 H
92.1 Obama, 91.1 Dem

Donna Edwards (D-Fort Washington), lives here; black majority. College Park, Suitland and Fort Washington in Prince George's County, and Silver Spring in MoCo. Donna Edwards, the whiner, gets the blackest and the safest district in the state for either party, though she still gets mostly cut off from MoCo, which was her chief whine in the redistricting kerfuffle. Safe D, black hold

2
VAP: 22.7 W, 50.5 B, 17.3 H, 7.4 A
85.3 Obama, 84.6 Dem

Open; black majority. Prince George's and Montgomery Counties. Safe D, black pickup

7
VAP: 64.4 W, 20.5 B, 6.2 H, 6.7 A
60.2 Obama, 63.4 Dem

Open. Southern Baltimore City and parts of Anne Arundel and Howard Counties. Maryland's districts are so fucked up. This contains much of Dutch Ruppersberger's territory, but his home is way north in the 14th. Ruppersberger probably decides to run here. Safe D

8
VAP: 37.7 W, 50.6 B, 7 A
74.5 Obama, 72.5 Dem

Elijah Cummings (D-Baltimore) lives here; black majority. Slice of Baltimore, and parts of Baltimore and Howard Counties. Safe D, black hold

9
VAP: 40.7 W, 50 B
80.7 Obama, 80.9 Dem

John Sarbanes (D-Towson) lives here; black majority. Slice of Baltimore and northern suburbs. Just because his home is here doesn't mean he's connected to his base, in the fucked up nature of Maryland redistricting. Sarbanes probably moves to the neighboring 10th to avoid a primary with a black pol, even though his famous last name could carry him. Safe D, black pickup if open

10
VAP: 45.4 W, 44.8 B, 5 H
70.3 Obama, 72.8 Dem

Open; plurality white. Baltimore and part of Baltimore County. As I said, Sarbanes might prefer to run here, the bump in white percentage, as well the family name would insulate him (for a time) from ambitious black politicians. It also includes more of his current territory. Safe D, black opportunity if open

11
VAP: 39.7 W, 17.9 B, 21.4 H, 18.5 A
72.1 Obama, 72.8 Dem

Open; racial clusterfuck, plurality white. MoCo. Depending on how the primary goes, any of these ethnic groups could win this district easily. Safe D, minority opportunity

14
VAP: 77.3 W, 13.1 B
46.1 Obama, 52.9 Obama

Dutch Ruppersberger (D) and Andy Harris (R), both of Cockeysville, live here. However, like I said, Dutch runs in the 7th and Harris runs in the 16th. So this will likely be open. The Obama %age doesn't look good, but it's 6 points better than the district Frank Kratovil held for two years, so in a good Dem year the right candidate could win this and with the right campaigning, hold it. With the domination the MD Dems have over the state machine, I could call this Lean D, but I'll call it Swing
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Maryland goes from a 6-2 delegation and a 7-1 map to a 13-2-1 map. This is all assuming Ruppersberger moves south to the 7th, Sarbanes moves east to the 10th, and Roscoe Bartlett and Andy Harris move north to the 15th and 16th, respectively. Three new black representatives join Edwards and Cummings for sure, as well as a new minority opportunity district in the 11th.

West Virginia


The Mountain State gets 5 districts.

No political data, sorry.

1
VAP: 92.7 W

Open. Former Rep. Alan Mollohan (D-Fairmont) lives here. Fairmont and the Eastern Panhandle. It's difficult to handicap these races without political data, and Obama's performance wouldn't help much either. Given the absolute dominance Democrats have over the state, I'll call this Likely D

2
VAP: 94.8 W

David McKinley (R-Wheeling) lives here. The Northern Panhandle and North-Central WV. Former State Sen. Mike Oliviero (D-Morgantown), who defeated Alan Mollohan in the primary for WV-01 in 2010, also lives here. West Virginians are getting more used to voting for Republicans, but I think in a year not named 2010 McKinley may have a race on his hands. Plus, McKinley is cut off from the sole Republican bastion in the state of Wood County (Parkersburg). Swing

3
VAP: 93.1 W

Nick Rahall (D-Beckley), Ranking Member of the Transportation and Infrastructure Committee, lives here. Southern West Virginia (the "coal counties" and the Potomac Highlands. Having an incumbent Democrat here, even with some new territory, is basically a slam-dunk in this one-party state. Safe D

4
VAP: 93.2 W

Shelley Moore Capito (R-Charleston) lives here. The Charleston Metro Area. Capito was basically first elected based on the strength of her family name (Her father was Governor from '69-'77 and '85-'89), but has been reelected easily since. Would be in play if she ever retired to run for higher office, as she is constantly name-dropped for, but until then this is Safe R

5
VAP: 95.9 W

Open. A new district, this is the Allegheny Plateau and part of the Coal Counties, city of Parkersburg. Again, given the strength of the WV Democratic party in the state, any open district is probably Likely D
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West Virginia currently has a 1-2 delegation, it goes to 3-1-1.

District of Columbia


DC Voting Rights is a sticky issue. I personally think residents should be able to organize into their own state. That would require a constitutional amendment, amending Article I, Section 8, Clause 17. Under Doubling, I think DC should at the very least get two non-voting delegates to the House, no less than the least populous state.

1
VAP: 34 W, 50.4 B, 10.2 H
93.1 Obama

Majority black. I am not sure which district Eleanor Holmes Norton (D) lives in, but she would run for re-election in this one. Safe D, black hold

2
VAP: 42.5 W, 43.6 B, 6.9 H
92.6 Obama

Open, plurality black. This is the district that includes all of the seats of power of the U.S. Government; the Capitol and the White House. African Americans would dominate the primary electorate, and most likely elect another black Delegate. Safe D, black pickup
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DC's non-voting delegation goes from 1-0 to 2-0, both African-American.
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These two states together are 16-3-2, bringing the House so far as a whole to 210-148-37

Poll

Does David McKinley win in the new WV-02?

66%12 votes
33%6 votes

| 18 votes | Vote | Results

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Comment Preferences

  •  Tip Jar (3+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:
    gabjoh, WisJohn, dufffbeer

    24, Solid Liberal Democrat (-4.75, -4.51), DKE Gay Caucus Majority Leader, IN-02; Swingnut. Gregg for Governor! Donnelly for Senate! Mullen for Congress!

    by HoosierD42 on Sat Feb 18, 2012 at 02:23:39 PM PST

  •  Any possibility of making (1+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:
    HoosierD42

    a white, or at least a non-primary-majority-black district, in DC?

    How does homeopathy work? | Rick Santorum | Self-appointed DKE Hudson River Crossings Caucus Chair (NJ-10, mostly)

    by gabjoh on Sat Feb 18, 2012 at 03:12:27 PM PST

  •  No it wouldn't. (3+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:
    WisJohn, HoosierD42, bfen
    DC Voting Rights is a sticky issue. I personally think residents should be able to organize into their own state. That would require a constitutional amendment, amending Article I, Section 8, Clause 17.
    It wouldn't require a Constitutional amendment at all.

    Congress is empowered to create a federal district no larger than 10x10 miles.

    They can create a federal district significantly smaller anytime they'd like.

    All Congress would have to do would be to declare the federal district to be comprised solely of the White House, the Mall and adjoining buildings, the Capitol, the Supreme Court, and the LOC/Congressional office buildings, which between them have a total of zero residents who would be registered to vote there. (The President and family live in the WH, obviously, but they're registered to vote in their home state.)

    The remainder of DC would then be declared a federal territory—and, like any federal territory, DC would be allowed to form its own state, since it's got over 60,000 people. As DC has already drafted a state Constitution and declared our intent to become a US state, all it would take would be a majority of votes in both houses of Congress to approve our application for statehood—and voila, we're the 51st state.

    The only state that would have legal standing to object to this arrangement would be Maryland, who gave the land to DC to begin with—but since Maryland's political leadership, whose power base is in Baltimore and the DC suburbs, doesn't particularly want there to be another 600,000-person power center in the state, they won't stand in the way.

    "When I give food to the poor, they call me a saint. When I ask why the poor have no food, they call me a communist." --Dom Helder Camara, archbishop of Recife

    by JamesGG on Sat Feb 18, 2012 at 04:12:51 PM PST

    •  Well done! (1+ / 0-)
      Recommended by:
      gabjoh

      I never thought of it that way.

      24, Solid Liberal Democrat (-4.75, -4.51), DKE Gay Caucus Majority Leader, IN-02; Swingnut. Gregg for Governor! Donnelly for Senate! Mullen for Congress!

      by HoosierD42 on Sat Feb 18, 2012 at 06:16:11 PM PST

      [ Parent ]

    •  Wrong (1+ / 0-)
      Recommended by:
      HoosierD42

      It definitely would necessitate an amendment removing the current 23rd Amendment. Obviously the easiest way to go about granting D.C. statehood is the way you've mentioned, but that would leave this new smaller "federal district" with three hapless electoral votes which would be completely controlled by the occupants of the White House if they so chose to register to vote there. Do we really want to give 3 votes to the President and the First Lady? Ha. No.

      22, Nice Calm Burkean Post-Modern Gay Democrat; NM-2 (Childhood), TX-21 (School), TX-10 (Home); SSP: wmayes

      by wwmiv on Sun Feb 19, 2012 at 03:05:47 AM PST

      [ Parent ]

      •  Yeah, but that would be cleanup. (1+ / 0-)
        Recommended by:
        HoosierD42

        Once DC has statehood, the opposition party (which would undoubtedly be Republicans, since no Republican President would ever sign a DC statehood bill) would immediately push for the repeal of that amendment in order to deny the President those 3 EVs.

        Not to mention that even if it weren't repealed, there wouldn't be any qualified electors from the new Federal District:

        ...but no Senator or Representative, or Person holding an Office of Trust or Profit under the United States, shall be appointed an Elector.
        Which means the President can't be an elector, and depending on how this was interpreted, the First Lady/Fella can't be an Elector either (since she/he gets a staff, has an official role, and gets federal protection and other perks). Unless the President has at least three adult children living in the White House, or they find a homeless guy who's lived only on the streets within the new Federal District, there aren't enough electors there to qualify.

        (Conversely, the 23rd Amendment could be interpreted in such a way that Congress could mandate that the new, zero-resident Federal District choose one elector from each party, and one elector to "throw away" his/her vote by giving it to someone else.)

        "When I give food to the poor, they call me a saint. When I ask why the poor have no food, they call me a communist." --Dom Helder Camara, archbishop of Recife

        by JamesGG on Sun Feb 19, 2012 at 08:11:34 AM PST

        [ Parent ]

  •  Andy Harris (1+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:
    HoosierD42

    Harris may actually pick to stay in MD-14 because he'd be safe in the primary. Harris, a suburban Baltimorean, may be very vulnerable to an Eastern Shore Republican in that Eastern Shore seat you said he'd move to.

    18. R. IL-10. Justin Amash-ite. “Freedom granted only when it is known beforehand that its effects will be beneficial is not freedom.”- F.A. Hayek

    by IllinoyedR on Sat Feb 18, 2012 at 04:44:13 PM PST

  •  Hmm (2+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:
    HoosierD42, bfen

    I really don't see how a 51% Obama seat could "lean D." That's an R+ seat and Anne Arundel County is not the south.

    18. R. IL-10. Justin Amash-ite. “Freedom granted only when it is known beforehand that its effects will be beneficial is not freedom.”- F.A. Hayek

    by IllinoyedR on Sat Feb 18, 2012 at 04:46:15 PM PST

    •  I thought about that (0+ / 0-)

      But considering a) Democrats hold a majority of the local offices (in the House and Senate at least) and b) the Dem average consisting of every statewide race between 2004 and 2010 (a staggering amount), I thought that was not only well within reach of a Blue Dog-type Dem, of which Maryland has its share, but easily winnable. That was my rationale. It would probably be smart to downgrade that to Swing though.

      24, Solid Liberal Democrat (-4.75, -4.51), DKE Gay Caucus Majority Leader, IN-02; Swingnut. Gregg for Governor! Donnelly for Senate! Mullen for Congress!

      by HoosierD42 on Sat Feb 18, 2012 at 06:19:44 PM PST

      [ Parent ]

    •  Disagree (0+ / 0-)

      Local Dems typically far outperform the top of the ticket. 51% Obama is around 56-58% Dem in Maryland no matter where in the state it is.

      22, Nice Calm Burkean Post-Modern Gay Democrat; NM-2 (Childhood), TX-21 (School), TX-10 (Home); SSP: wmayes

      by wwmiv on Sun Feb 19, 2012 at 03:03:23 AM PST

      [ Parent ]

  •  Where will you fit 870 representatives? (0+ / 0-)

    Actually more adding DC, Puerto Rico, Guam etc.   Are you going to rip apart the Capitol to double the size of the House chamber?

    "We have always known that heedless self-interest was bad morals, now we know that it is bad economics." Franklin Delano Roosevelt, Jan. 20, 1937

    by Navy Vet Terp on Sat Feb 18, 2012 at 06:17:52 PM PST

    •  The House can fit far more than the 435 members (2+ / 0-)
      Recommended by:
      Navy Vet Terp, gabjoh

      for events such as State of the Union. It's rare that more than 100 members of the House are in the chamber at one time. The real issue would be constructing more office buildings.

      But this isn't meant to be a serious proposal, so to speak. But when every Congressman represents close to 700,000 people, it needs to expand to become more representative and accountable to the citizens. I personally would love a Doubled House, but I understand it's not the most realistic option.

      24, Solid Liberal Democrat (-4.75, -4.51), DKE Gay Caucus Majority Leader, IN-02; Swingnut. Gregg for Governor! Donnelly for Senate! Mullen for Congress!

      by HoosierD42 on Sat Feb 18, 2012 at 06:23:00 PM PST

      [ Parent ]

    •  Build a new Capitol building for the House... (0+ / 0-)

      ...and site it where RFK Stadium is currently, straight down East Capitol from the current building. Repurpose the current Capitol building to be Senate-only.

      The House of Representatives Building would have a "lovely" overlook over the Anacostia River (which might light a fire under their asses to clean it up), it's actually much more accessible by Metro and freeway than the Capitol building itself, and there's enough space there to build a chamber and offices for thousands of representatives.

      "When I give food to the poor, they call me a saint. When I ask why the poor have no food, they call me a communist." --Dom Helder Camara, archbishop of Recife

      by JamesGG on Sun Feb 19, 2012 at 10:07:37 AM PST

      [ Parent ]

  •  You could fairly easily calculate WV election data (1+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:
    HoosierD42

    for those districts since they do not split counties.

    uselectionatlas.org

    Recent presidential, senatorial, and gubernatorial data.

  •  Finally! (1+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:
    HoosierD42

    You drew these MONTHS ago.

    22, Nice Calm Burkean Post-Modern Gay Democrat; NM-2 (Childhood), TX-21 (School), TX-10 (Home); SSP: wmayes

    by wwmiv on Sun Feb 19, 2012 at 03:01:47 AM PST

  •  Splitting the Eastern Shore like crazy (0+ / 0-)

    Maryland would never allow that.
    Nice work on Baltimore City, though. It's a shame all the white suburbs that can be added to the black districts are heavily Democratic.

  •  Another Maryland in 16 districts (1+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:
    HoosierD42


    (click for larger image)
    It's a 13-3.
    It has 3 safe Republican districts. 1 is R+10. 2 is R+18. 16 is R+14.
    3 is a historically Democratic 51% Obama district that makes me nervous.  9 is the next least Democratic district at 55% Obama. All others are 57% Obama or more.
    4, 5, 10, and 11 are black-majority VAP. 12 is a Hispanic-plurality (34.3% VAP) district.

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