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Redistricting Plan Passes Maryland Senate

House of Delegates to vote Wednesday

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The vote board at the Maryland state senate shows a resounding victory for the redistricting plan, as was expected.
Matt Bush
The vote board at the Maryland state senate shows a resounding victory for the redistricting plan, as was expected.

The Maryland State Senate has given its OK to the Congressional redistricting map pushed by governor Martin O'Malley. The vote in the Senate reached the super majority needed to make sure the newly drawn districts are ready for next year's primary elections, and was almost exclusively down party lines. Democrats supported it, Republicans didn't.

The Maryland House of Delegates is expected to vote on the redistricting Wednesday morning.

Prince George's County Democrat Anthony Muse was the lone Democrat to vote against the map. He says while minority populations continue to grow in Maryland, their voting influence is being diluted by the Democrats' desire to add another of their party to Congress.

"Once again, as has happened so many times before in our history, minorities are being asked to step back and take another one for the party," says Muse, who admitted the redistricting benefits Democrats trying to win Republican Congressman Roscoe Bartlett's seat in western Maryland.

Democrat Jamie Raskin of Montgomery County says while Democrats benefit from redistricting in Maryland, Republicans are doing the same thing in states where they control legislatures: "It's an American problem. All across America, people are complaining about extremely spliced and diced, swurvy, curvy districts where elected officials choose voters before voters choose elected officials. That's the system we've got in 50 states."

Republican Nancy Jacobs, the senate minority leader, expects the proposal to end up in court.

"When you rush something through like this, you don't give enough time and light of day to examine process, I think you're going to find mistakes," says Jacobs. "And I think when we leave here we're going to find more mistakes."

No Republicans voted in favor of the plan.


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