Tuesday, October 13, 2015

Showdown expected in PA House over new Congressional map

There could be a big showdown today or tomorrow over the controversial congressional redistricting plab that squeaked through the Senate by the narrowest of margins.

Showdown expected in PA House over new Congressional map


There could be a big showdown today or tomorrow over the controversial congressional redistricting plab that squeaked through the Senate by the narrowest of margins.

Now it seems that House Republicans don't have the support to pass a map drafted by Republicans that appears to protect GOP incumbants and snag several Democratic seats along the way.

Arm twisting was underway late last week with Philadelphia Democratic City Committee Chairman and U.S. Rep. Bob Brady, D-Philadelphia, calling Democratic state House members from the Philadelphia delegation, asking for a vote for the congressional redistricting plan, according to Capitolwire news service.

Brady and U.S. Rep. Mike Doyle, D-Allegheny, in exchange for concessions in that map that helped them, said they would round up votes to pass it. And now they were hearing from House Republican leaders in Harrisburg that they needed more votes, because going into this weekend, and today, the map lacks the House votes to pass it.

The way Capitolwire's Peter DeCoursey sees it, two of the four most liberal urban members of the U.S. House are lobbying their fellow urban Democrats to pass a congressional redistricting that masses the largest number of urban Democratic voters into the smallest number of districts.

Why? Because it helps Doyle and Brady - giving Brady more white Democrats along the Delaware river, protecting him against future black primary challenger. (Folks who know how beloved Brady is among African American voters may question that theory but it's interesting nonetheless.)

The legislative map (www.redistricting.pa.us) passed the GOP-controlled Senate on a 26-24 vote, with four Republicans joining Democrats in opposiition. For more details on PA map machinations check out my colleague Tom Fitzgerald's blog "Big Tent."

The House has two legislative sessin days this week before the holiday break. With candidate nominating petitions set to begin circulating on Jan. 24, the clock is ticking on getting a congressional map finalized.

DeCoursey predicts House Rs may need as many as 20 Democrats to pass the bill.

House Democratic leaders say they have made no deal and plan to push for their own plan authored by House Minority Whip Mike Hanna (D., Clinton)


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About this blog

Commonwealth Confidential gives you regularly updated coverage of the state legislature, the governor and the workings of the state bureaucracy. It is written by Angela Couloumbis in the Inquirer's Harrisburg bureau, based in the statehouse, and by the newspaper's far-flung campaign reporters.

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