Smart Talk: Did new district maps change election results?

Pa. Dems would have made gains even under old congressional map, analysis suggests

Keith Srakocic / The Associated Press

William Marx points out one of the districts that crossed four counties as an image of the old congressional districts of Pennsylvania is projected on a wall in the classroom where he teaches civics in Pittsburgh on Friday, Nov. 16, 2018. Marx was a plaintiff in the Pennsylvania lawsuit that successfully challenged the Republican-drawn congressional maps. Marx said he believes the new district boundaries resulted in “a more fair congressional representation of the will of the people in Pennsylvania.”

The Pennsylvania Supreme Court ruled last year that the Congressional district boundaries were unconstitutional. The court asked state legislators to offer an alternative map, but when they failed to do so, the court adopted its own boundaries.

Before the most recent election, there were 13 Republicans and five Democrats representing Pennsylvania in Congress. Afterward, there was an even split of nine Republicans and nine Democrats.

What would the results have been if the election had been held using the old boundaries?

Keystone Crossroads reporter Emily Previti analyzed the data and joined Smart Talk to discuss those results.

Key points: 

:49 – Background

3:01 – “Common wisdom”

7:04 – Impact of the boundary change on the Smucker/King race

11:20 – How much do national issues affect local races?

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