« Home

John Nephew

Maplewood City Council Policy & Politics


House Republican Redistricting Plan and Maplewood

If you're a political junkie, you're probably aware that the House Republican majority has issued their proposal for legislative redistricting.

Their map is pretty ugly for Maplewood.  Right now, our city has two representatives (Lillie in House District 55A, Slawik in House District 55B) and one Senator (Wiger for Senate District 55).  The Republican proposal would carve up Maplewood across three senate districts (41, 42 and 67) and four house districts (41B, 42A, 67A, and 67B) with little respect for our existing precinct boundaries.

For example, I see that my precinct (Maplewood Precinct 3) would be split between House Districts 41B and 42A. I would have both a different representative and a different senator than our neighbors across the street.  We would also have to redraw our Maplewood precinct boundaries, including a precinct that would have to have a long and ungainly finger extended between County Road B and Highway 36, one or two city blocks wide, to include the portions of current Precincts 2 and 3 that are carved away to the new District 42A.  Those residents would have to drive somewhere east of Highway 61 to vote.

(I'm guessing that state law would require our precincts to line up within legislative districts.  Otherwise these precincts would need to have two sets of ballots printed, and election judges would have to carefully check that each voter is given the correct ballot based on the location of their house.  Needless to say, this increases delays at the polls, the chances of errors, and the cost to our city for running elections.  I think it does happen in some cases where a single precinct includes two school districts, however.)

As best as I can tell, these are the people who would represent Maplewood under this map:

House District 41B: Rep. Mindy Greiling (DFL-Roseville, what is now District 54A) would find herself in a district that includes Maplewood Precinct 1, and most of Precincts 2 and 3.

House District 42A: Rep. Bev Scalze (DFL-Little Canada) would find herself in a district that includes Maplewood Precincts 4 through 10, and slivers of Precincts 2 and 3.

House District 67A: East side Rep. Tim Mahoney (DFL-Saint Paul) would have Precincts 11, 12, and a portion of Precinct 13 added to his district.

House District 67B: Current Reps. Nora Slawik (DFL-Maplewood) and Sheldon Johnson (DFL-St Paul) would live in the same redrawn district, which would include part of Precinct 13 plus all of 14, 15, and 16.

Senate District 41: Sen. John Marty's (DFL-Roseville) redrawn boundaries would include Maplewood Precinct 1 and most of Precincts 2 and 3.

Senate District 42: Sen. Chuck Wiger's (DFL-Maplewood) home is in this district, and he currently represents our entire city.  He would lose his current constituents in southern and western Maplewood, and gain Little Canada and Vadnais Heights.  His Maplewood precincts would be all of 4-10, plus slices of 2 and 3.

Senate District 67: Sen. John Harrington (DFL-Saint Paul) represents the current District 67, which would shift to include all of Maplewood Precincts 11-16 in the South Leg.  But the district is also gerrymandered to include the city of Newport, which is home to fellow Sen. Katie Sieben (DFL-Newport) of current District 57.

What's ironic is that redistricting is in theory supposed to try and line up with municipal boundaries when possible, and the City of Maplewood has a population awfully close to the ideal population for a single house district.  It's hard not to see partisan motives in this carving up of our city (and it seems like the conventional wisdom is that the whole state map offered by House Republicans is pretty much veto bait), especially in the South Leg districts where the lines are redrawn to pit urban and suburban DFL incumbents against each other.

Post a Comment

Newer Posts Older Posts

Posts by Date

Powered by Blogger & Blogger Templates. Customized by Michelle Nephew.
Contact me at