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House gives initial approval of 6-2 congressional redistricting map

  

JEFFERSON CITY, Mo. — After defeating multiple amendments, the House gave initial approval of the congressional redistricting map

Legislators perfected the map, which would give Republicans a 6-2 advantage, in an 84-60 vote Tuesday afternoon. Conservatives’ efforts to put forth a 7-1 map failed as did multiple proposals from Democrats. 

“I’m pleased with the work of the House and the body, and I look forward to taking it to third read and sending it to the Senate later this week,” Rep. Dan Shaul, who shepherded the bill through the lower chamber, told The Missouri Times. 

The map is considered to be 6-2 in favor of Republicans. It was perfected by the House in an 84-60 vote on Jan. 18, 2022.

Last week, St. Charles Republicans urged the legislature to pass a map that would keep the county in one congressional district. The map perfected Tuesday continues to split the county between the 1st and 2nd districts, and those members split their votes as well. Reps. Ron Hicks, Adam Schwadron, and John Wiemann voted to perfect the bill; Reps. Phil Christofanelli, Tony Lovasco, Nick Schroer, and Richard West voted no. (Rep. Adam Schnelting was absent.) 

Schroer kicked off the debate Tuesday with a proposed map that would favor Republicans 7-1. His map would have kept St. Charles whole but split both Boone County and Jackson County three ways. 

Speaker Rob Vescovo ruled in favor of a point of order challenging the amendment, thus sending it back. 

“Today I offered an amended map to help ensure Missouri replace Nancy Pelosi as the speaker of the House. Even though House research, Senate research, and Maptitude (the software used for three decades in Missouri) indicated this map is constitutional, others agreed with the radical leftist that hoped to defeat it,” Schroer told The Missouri Times. “Interestingly, the House had the opportunity to vote on a similar map that would lead to stopping left-wing Democrats in D.C., while keeping St. Charles County whole. Sadly, state Rep. John Wiemann sided with the establishment and radical leftists voting against this map.”

Rep. Nick Schroer attempted to put forth a map that would be 7-1 in favor of Republicans, splitting Jackson and Boone counties among three congressional districts. (HOUSE COMMUNICATIONS/TIM BOMMEL)

Another proposal from Hicks would have also kept St. Charles intact while only splitting Boone County between two districts. Jackson County would have been split between three districts again. This amendment failed in a 23-120 roll call vote.  

Democrats put forth a map that would have moved the 1st congressional district a little more northwest, increasing the Black and minority population in the majority-minority district. It also would have tweaked Jackson County to put some areas in the 6th congressional district. 

Debate had been limited to four hours but representatives only took about two to perfect the bill. 

St. Charles County legislators were split in support for the congressional redistricting map that splits the county between two districts.

The HB 2117 map further compacts the 5th congressional district in Kansas City, Independence, and Lee’s Summit. It moves Pulaski County, which contains Fort Leanord Wood, to the 8th district. The 7th district got smaller, and Jefferson County moved to the 3rd and out of the 8th. 

Shaul said the 8th congressional district needed to grow “significantly” with about 50,000 people. 

The counties that are split in the new map are: 

  • Camden between CD 3 and CD 4
  • Clay between CD 5 and CD 6
  • Jackson between CD 5 and CD 6 
  • St. Charles between CD 2 and CD 3
  • St. Louis between CD 1 and CD 2
  • Taney between CD 7 and CD 8 

In a recent interview, Gov. Mike Parson said he would let the legislature work on the maps before becoming involved in the process. 

“Hopefully they come up with some maps that they can agree on,” Parson told The Missouri Times. “We’ll just see what they come up with, and how that plays out. There’s a process, and it just needs to go through the process.”