Wisconsin begins process of drawing new political map after census data released

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The long and likely court-intensive process of drawing Wisconsin’s next political map is underway.

The U.S. Census Bureau on Thursday delivered the state’s population data. It was originally due to states back in the spring.

“I’m glad the Biden Administration has finally gotten the data to us after dragging their feet for months,” Assembly Speaker Robin Vos, R-Rochester, said Thursday. “Soon we will begin the robust map drawing process and I’m confident we will draw a map that the governor will sign.”

Republicans control the Wisconsin legislature and will, for the most part, control the map drawing process. Though there is an expectation Democrats and voting advocates will file lawsuits to challenge the Republican map.

On Thursday, the National Democratic Redistricting Committee warned lawmakers to draw maps that it finds acceptable.

“For too long Wisconsinites have had to reside in one of the most gerrymandered states in the country. With the release of the U.S. Census Data, we now have the opportunity to change that and draw new maps,” NRDC Wisconsin Director Elizabeth Treviño said.

Along those lines, Gov. Evers has proposed a People’s Map Commission to draw a map that meets his wishes.

Vos said Republicans are offering people the chance to draw a map of their own.

“Today, the legislature announced a website for the public to participate in the map drawing process. Any Wisconsin resident can submit a statewide map, regional plan, or community of interest to the legislature,” Vos added.

It will take some time to begin the map-making process. Vos said the people’s maps aren’t due until mid-October.

He is not saying when lawmakers will begin the process of drawing their maps, or when lawmakers will finish the maps.

The hope is to have the new political maps finished in time for the spring elections of 2022.

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