COLORADO — The nonpartisan staff for Colorado's independent redistricting commission released an updated proposed map this week.
Throughout the last few months, commissioners have listened to feedback from people throughout the state on the preliminary maps for both Colorado's state senate and house districts. Feedback from those sessions was taken into account for this update.
Currently, El Paso County has eight districts for the state house of representatives. This would remain the case under this updated proposal. However, there could be some changes in terms of the competitiveness of the districts.
Looking at the map some districts are staying relatively the same compared to the current districts- with the exception of a few changes.
For example, under this map, Manitou Springs and Old Colorado City would move into a district (House District 20) that largely makes up the entire western portion of Colorado Springs. Currently, Manitou Springs and Old Colorado City are a part of a district that extends into downtown Colorado Springs. The district is represented by Marc Snyder, a Democrat, who won the seat with 50 percent of the vote in November's election.
The proposed House District 20 would give a slight Republican advantage by about nine percent of the vote. This is based on data provided by the nonpartisan staff.
The most competitive district in the proposed plan for El Paso County is House District 16. The way the district is drawn puts downtown, north-central Colorado Springs, and neighborhoods near the University of Colorado Colorado Springs.
The differential from the state shows shows a slim margin if the map is something commissioners look to adopt, making this a swing district.
A noticeable change from the previous map released by the state includes southeast Colorado Springs. The preliminary map placed portions of southeast Colorado Springs into southwest portions of the city. The latest map, according to nonpartisan staff, largely follows the lines of Harrison School District 2.
A similar story is playing out for senate districts in Colorado Springs. A competitive district (data from the state showing an advantage for democrats but only by 0.3%) is being proposed for western parts of El Paso County. The district is currently represented by Sen. Pete Lee, where the current boundaries extend into southeastern portions of Colorado Springs.
Senate District 12 as drawn in this updated map provides some additional competition with Republicans favored by 3.6%, also making this a swing district.
House Districts remain similar to current districts under this new proposal. There are some slight changes breaking up parts of Pueblo into a more rural district and other parts of the city with rural parts of the county.
The biggest change is in the state Senate map, this new proposal puts the entire county into one Senate district, making it more of a swing district with an advantage 5.1 percent for Democratic voters.