Kansas Republican senators approve map to split KC metro, splinter Democratic vote

Because Republicans hold a super-majority, Democrats have little power to oppose the newly drawn voting map that clearly favors the GOP

By

State News

January 21, 2022 - 5:23 PM

Senate President Ty Masterson made a deal with Sen. Mark Steffen to relax childhood vaccination standards in order to secure his support for a redistricting map. (Sherman Smith/Kansas Reflector)

TOPEKA — Kansas Republican senators over the course of a three-hour debate Friday countered criticisms of their plan for the state’s congressional district boundaries, passing the controversial “Ad Astra” map.

Opponents argued Republican leadership rushed the map and did not do enough to preserve the integrity of minority communities and other communities of interest, pointing to the decision to divide Wyandotte County along Interstate 70 and to move Lawrence into a rural district that stretches to the Colorado border. Democrats described the proposed map as an attempt to shift power in favor of one party by shattering the 3rd Congressional District.

Senate President Ty Masterson batted away those criticisms, arguing that his map maintained the same voting outcomes as previous elections and noting a desire to keep Johnson County together, as opposed to Wyandotte.

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