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Preliminary redistricting map plans to house KU, K-State in Big First District

Published: Jan. 18, 2022 at 3:43 PM CST
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TOPEKA, Kan. (WIBW) - Plans to house both KU and K-State in the Big First congressional district have been introduced in the Kansas Senate’s preliminary redistricting map.

Kansas Senate President Ty Masterson says he and chairs of the Senate Redistricting Committee introduced a preliminary Congressional Map on Tuesday, Jan. 18, based on suggestions from in-person and virtual listening tours throughout the state. He said the same map was also introduced by Chairman Croft in the House Redistricting Committee.

According to Masterson, the map maintains the required minimum of three split counties - Pawnee, Douglas and Wyandotte. Both Douglas and Wyandotte counties are primarily divided along natural and geographic barriers like highways and rivers.

The First District will be the home of both University of Kansas and Kansas State University, which have aligned goals returning them to the same district.

Kansas’s Second District will include several military installations - Ft. Riley, Ft. Leavenworth, Forbes Field and the Kansas National Guard.

The Third District will keep Johnson Co. together and blend the Kansas City suburbs with nearby bedroom communities while the Fourth District will be the home of Wichita and its surrounding communities.

Masterson said the new map is also consistent with historical maps. For example, he said the Third Congressional District has had the following shifts over time:

  • The mid-1960s – 5 districts – Anderson County was in CD 3
  • 1973-1982 – 5 districts – Wyandotte County was split, and Franklin County was in CD 3
  • 1983-1992 – 5 districts – All of Miami County was included in CD 3
  • 1993-2002 – 4 districts – All of Miami County was included in CD 3, Douglas County split
  • 2003-2013 – 4 districts – Douglas County split, City of Lawrence split

According to Masterson, the new map retains political fairness as it maintains all four members of Congress within their districts and all four would still have won in 2020.

“This map is reflective of the testimony we received from the public, both on the 14-stop listening tour in August and the virtual listening tour in November,” said Masterson and Wilborn in a joint statement. “The map creates compact and contiguous districts, preserves existing district cores, and groups together communities of interest. We look forward to the hearings and helping advance this map through the legislative process.”

Preliminary redistricting map for Kansas announced on Jan. 18, 2022.
Preliminary redistricting map for Kansas announced on Jan. 18, 2022.(Senator Ty Masterson's Office)

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