BOSTON (CBS) – The legislative committee charged with redrawing Massachusetts congressional districts has issued its long-awaited map, and the results reflect a range of political pressures sparked by the state’s loss of one of its ten seats in Congress.
View: Proposed District Map
Most notably, current incumbents Stephen Lynch of South Boston and William Keating of Quincy have been thrown together by the removal of Quincy from Keating’s old 10th congressional district.
WBZ’s Jon Keller is at large:
Keating will have to move his voting residence to avoid a head-to-head showdown with Lynch.
Late Monday Keating released the following statement:
“After talking with my wife Tevis and our children, Kristen and Patrick, I have decided to run in the new 9th Congressional District where we’ve owned a home for 17 years. I hope that the residents of my current District – from Quincy to Provincetown and the Islands – know that their well-being is my primary concern and nothing changes that. I look forward to continuing to represent the people I’m currently serving, as well as the new communities that will be a part of this district in the future. And I will continue to work to create new jobs, protect our historic industries and preserve Social Security and Medicare. The current fight for our hardworking families isn’t about me or any one district map. It’s about changing the direction of this country so that all residents can benefit from the opportunities America has to offer.”
The new district lines suggest the possibility of a strong primary challenge to Keating, perhaps by former State Sen. Robert O’Leary of Barnstable, who lost the 2010 Democratic primary to Keating, or by outgoing Mayor Scott Lang of New Bedford, a new addition to the so-called Cape and Islands district.
According to Redistricting Committee co-chair Jim Moran, a majority non-white district was created by extending the district represented by Mike Capuano down to Randolph.
Despite speculation she might lose key Democratic strongholds in her district, Rep. Niki Tsongas survives redistricting relatively unscathed, keeping Lawrence and Lowell together. And Worcester Congressman Jim McGovern is compensated for the loss of South Coast votes by picking up the five-college region of Amherst and Northampton.
The new map reflects population losses and demographic shifts in Massachusetts that have seen growth down the Cape and north of Boston but slippage in central and western regions. The plan is now posted online.
WBZ NewsRadio 1030’s Lana Jones reports.
The proposed map has Congressman Jim McGovern losing part of his district in Norfolk County.
WBZ NewsRadio 1030’s Kim Tunnicliffe spoke with votes in Wrentham
After several days of public comment, a final vote and gubernatorial approval is expected by next Wednesday, when the legislature ends formal sessions for the rest of 2011.