First Draft of NY's Newly Drawn Congressional Maps to be Released Today

First Draft of NY's Newly Drawn Congressional Maps to be Released Today

By Yehudit Garmaise

Jonathan Cervas, a redistricting expert appointed by a judge to recreate the New York state congressional maps is expected to release the first draft of his preliminary drawings on Monday.

After ruling in March that the maps previously passed by the state legislature violated the state constitution, State Supreme Court Justice Patrick McCallister chose Cervas to re-draw them. 

Although congressional districts are supposed to represent geographical areas and the interests of their constituents, NY Democrats drew district 10 in a strangely serpentine route that covered an unusually wide range of communities with obviously different political interests.

New York’s Democrats drew the previous congressional map, released in January, to clearly give Democrats statewide significant advantages: in a dishonest and manipulative practice of districting called, “gerrymandering.”

With US Rep. Jerry Nadler (D), serving the 10th district, in which Boro Park stands, since 2013, the area that was redrawn to so overwhelmingly favor Democrats that the area was jokingly called “Jerry-mandered.”

In the previous map, the 10th District started on the Upper West Side, before snaking, through 15 different State Assembly districts, down to Brooklyn, and jumping over New York Harbor.

Then, the boundaries of district 10 took three sharp turns to include small parts of Carroll Gardens and Boerum Hill, before broadening out to encompass all of Prospect Park and Bensonhurst, and ending up in Boro Park, whose constituents share few political interests with the others in their district.

While the new boundaries of district 10 are not yet clear, one potential new match-up in the upcoming primary could that US Rep. Carolyn B. Maloney, who, since 2013, also served in the city’s 12th district on the Upper East Side alongside Nadler, after serving the 14th district since 1993, may now be pitted against him in a 12th district primary.

With Nadler running to represent the state's 12th District, the congressional race for Boro Park's 10th District now remains wide open, although NY State Sen. Brad Hoylman just tweeted that he is seriously thinking about throwing his hat into the ring to promote "progressive, experienced leadership in Washington."

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