A panel of judges reaffirmed on Friday a ruling from October 2014 decreeing the boundaries of the 3rd Congressional District need to be redrawn, saying that the current boundaries inequitably isolate the states’ black voters:
The 2012 redistricting plan that McDonnell signed increased the number of voting-age African-Americans in the 3rd District by 44,711. The judges said it increased the district’s black voting age population from 53.1 percent to 56.3 percent.
“There is no indication that this increase of more than 3 percentage points was needed to ensure nonretrogression,” the two judges wrote.
“While I was not involved in this lawsuit, I was a proponent of the redistricting plan sponsored by State Senator Mamie Locke in 2011, which made all congressional districts in the Commonwealth more compact and contiguous,” said Congressman Scott (VA-03) in a statement released on Friday.
“I hope and expect the General Assembly will more equitably and appropriately balance the influence of all Virginia’s voters, as mandated by this decision, when they redraw the third congressional district and adjacent congressional districts by the September 1st deadline.”
Congressman Bobby Scott has held the 3rd Congressional District seat since 1992. Scott has run unopposed 5 times; none of his 5 challengers have managed more than 31% of the vote.
Virginia’s 3rd Congressional District covers all of the City of Portsmouth, parts of the Cities of Hampton, Newport News, Norfolk and Richmond, all of the counties of Charles City, New Kent, and Surry, and part of the counties of Henrico and Prince George.
Virginia is divided into 11 congressional districts, currently represented by 8 Republicans and 3 Democrats. The 3rd Districtdirectly abuts the 1st, 4th, and 7th Districts. The 1st and 7th Districts lean heavily Republican, with the 4th District much more competitive.
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