Justice Department OKs Arizona Congressional Map

Tuesday, 10 Apr 2012 09:20 AM

By Robert Engler

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The Justice Department has signed off on Arizona’s congressional redistricting plan, which generated months of partisan bickering in the Republican-dominated state legislature.
 
According to the Arizona Daily Star, the plan approved on Monday was created by the Independent Redistricting Commission and adds a ninth seat to Arizona’s U.S. House delegation based on the state’s population growth as recorded in the 2010 Census. 

The plan generated lots of controversy before being submitted to the Justice Department’s Civil Rights Division for approval. Republican lawmakers, for example, accused Democrats of trying to game the five-member commission in their favor.

At one point, they threatened to cut off funding for the panel, prompting Democrats to threaten a lawsuit.

Under the plan, Pima County, which previously included parts of two congressional districts, both held by Democrats, will now include parts of three. Arizona’s second largest city, Tucson, is in Pima County.

Arizona is still waiting for federal approval of its state legislative maps. The commission expects to hear back on those by April 30, according to executive director Kristina Gomez.

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