Re-mapping the State: Can Diana DeGette and Bill Vidal Keep Denver Intact?

March 2011

The process of re-drawing congressional districts based on the latest census figures generally kicks up some dust between lawmakers and politically inclined residents. There wasn't a whole lot of quarreling, however, during a bipartisan committee hearing at the state Capitol last night (Denver Post). While some quibbled over the design of the map, Congresswoman Diana DeGette and Denver's interim mayor, Bill Vidal, both Democrats, implored the committee to keep Denver intact. DeGette represents the state's 1st Congressional District, which hovers over the city and has been solidly Democratic for decades. Based on the latest census numbers, it needs to add 56,418 people to hit a target of 718,456. "I urge you to adopt a map that keeps Denver a whole and unified community," Vidal said.

The 3rd Congressional District, which includes a large swath of land covering Pueblo southwest toward the San Luis Valley and the entire Western Slope, will have to add 12,271 people. "That doesn't seem like a lot, but elections in Colorado have been decided by fewer votes than that," says Jack Rink, the new Pueblo County Republican Party chairman (Chieftain). Meanwhile, the Colorado Statesman digs into the details surrounding the shuffle.