This map is predicated on the idea that Democrats are vastly underperforming in Texas, and that things are only going to get better. A map that gives Democrats a majority of seats seriously weakens some of them, but with a serious GOTV effort, most should be able to survive a 2010-style Republican wave. I always wanted to ensure as few Democrats as possible ended up in conservative districts.
CD2 (Yellow)- El Paso to Piedra Negras. 20/2/76. O/M-53-46. D/R- 55/45. Slightly better than CD1 but Pete Gallego can't cruise to re-election in this largely rural border district. From the Big Bend town of Alpine, Gallego overperformed Obama in the smaller, more Republican counties, making me more comfortable in giving him a potentially tougher district. Likely D.
CD3 (Red)- Laredo to Bryan. 28/4/66. O-51/M-49. D/R-53/46. An even more ambitious district and the first in an effort to break-up the deep blue border counties. It circumvents Bexar County and takes in a lot of red areas but still remains comfortably Hispanic. Henry Cuellar has a solid base of support here. Lean D.
CD4 (Brown)- McAllen/Beeville/Victoria. 22/3/73. O50.7, M-49.3. D/R-52-48. Obama underperformed the Democratic average here and it is by no means safe. Republicans would have a fighting chance here but it tilts to Democrats. What's worrying is that there is no incumbent, which puts it in a substantial deal of danger. State Reps Ryan Guillen or Oscar Longoria could good candidates here. Lean D.
CD5 (Green)- Harlingen-Corpus Christi- 15/1/82. O60-M39. D/R- 61-38. Finally, a safe district. Though not for want of trying, this is about as unpacked as I could get the third of four fajita strip districts. Ruben Hinojosa will be fine here. Safe D.
CD6 (Blue)-Brownsville-Corpus Christi-Lake Jackson. 24/2/71. This is a more Republican district that the one Blake Farenthold unexpectedly won in 2010. Still, the Democrats won't be caught napping in this coastal district. Filemon Vela's the likely candidate. Likely D.
CD7 (Black)- San Antonio- 25/5/65, O56, M44. D/R-52-48. Not the Democratic vote sink that Joaquin Castro ended up with this time around, but one of the safer South Texas districts. Likely D.
CD8 (Light pink)-San Antonio- 29/7/61. O55, M44. D/R-51/49. Another tilt Democratic district, but Bexar County is going left rather than right. Lean D.
CD9 (Light blue)- San Antonio-Austin. 31/12/53. O60,M39. D/R-56/44. This is only majority Hispanic by VAP, but should be a full-out Hispanic district before too long. It's also pretty safe. Likely D.
CD10 (Brown)- Austin-Schertz. 69/4/20. O-58, M-42. D/R-51/49. You can't create a Hispanic district centred around Austin without weakening Lloyd Doggett, but he's a proven fighter and he won't be able to rest on his laurels in this district. Likely D.
CD11 (Light green)- San Antonio-Kerrville-Austin. 72-3-19. O30,M70. D/R-26-73. Our first Republican district, and boy is it unfriendly to Dems. It takes in the ruby red exurbs of San Antonio and Austin combined with some rural districts to the west. Safe R.
CD14 (Lurid pink)-Houston-Pasadena. 20-10-65. O54,M46. D/R-55-45. East Houston's Gene Green might make a run here, but this one was designed as a Hispanic majority seat. Lean D.
CD15 (Orange) -Houston. 26-12-56. O-54,M46.D/R-50/50. Another Hispanic majority seat, but it is probably the least safe of the bunch. At this stage I'd be unwilling to even designate it tilt Democratic. Tossup.
CD16 (Lime Green)- Houston-La Grange. 56-8-26. O32,M68. D28,R71. Houston is one of the most Republican big cities in America, so something had to give. This reaches in to the reddest parts of central Houston but also holds a lot of counties to the west. Safe R.
CD17 (Red)- Houston- 28-20-38-11. O58, M41. D/R-52/48. One of the most diverse districts as well as one of the most Asian. Lean Dem.
CD18 (Yellow)- Fort Bend County. 28-28-26-14. O-58, M42. D/R-53-46. African-Americans make up the narrowest of pluralities here but Al Green should hold on in the primary. This is another part of Texas that is trending blue, so it won't be Lean D for too long. Pete Olson also lives here and could well give Green quite a bit of trouble. Lean D.
CD19 (Khaki)- Galveston-Beaumont. 54-20-21. O42,M58. D/R-45/55. This features some ancestral Dem turf but is an uphill climb for Team Blue. Nick Lampson could give this a go but wouldn't be favoured. Craig Eiland is another potential candidate for what is slightly better than a suicide run. It's strange to think how this seat has such a good bench. Steve Stockman lives here and may just be crazy enough to have trouble in the general election, but I doubt it. Randy Weber also lives in the district and currently represents more of the district. Likely R.
CD20 (Dark pink)- The Woodlands. 70-6-17-5. O-26,M-74. D/R-22/77. It's hard to imagine that such a compact, non-rural district could be so insanely Republican. But there we are. There's no hope for Democrats here, or for any of the remaining districts until we get to Dallas-Fort Worth. Kevin Brady lives here, and Ted Poe also might take a run for it (I think he's been drawn into Sheila Jackson-Lee's district). Safe R.
CD21-(Spring Green) League City-Kingwood. 66-4-26. O-23, M-73. Another option for Ted Poe, as well as Steve Stockman, who doesn't live here but represents much of it already. Safe R.
CD22- (Dark grey) Nacogdoches, Lufkin, College Station. 73-11-11. O-30, M-70. It's hard to believe that Charlie Wilson was successfully re-elected multiple times to a district even remotely like this. Bill Flores doesn't represent much of this district but could make a run here. Kevin Brady is another potential candidate here. Safe R.
CD23- (Yellow) Temple-Waco-Waxahachie. 72-9-15. O-30, M-70. Another dire district for Democrats, with John Carter and Joe Barton both living at opposite ends. Safe R.
CD24- (Purple) Tyler, Longview. 70-16-11. O-29, M-70. This East Texas district is pretty much the same as Louie Gohmert's current district, so any hopes of getting rid of him are pretty much impossible. Though Paul Sadler lives here and might put in a respectable showing. Safe R.
CD25- (Salmon) Texarkana, Kaufman. 76-10-10. O-29, M-71. Another East Texas district that stretches across the Oklahoma border to Dallas. It's similar to Ralph Hall's current district, and should suit him well until his untimely death sometime in the mid-23rd century.
CD27- (Light blue) Carrollton, Garland- 60-9-20. O-40, M-59. The only Republican seat in Dallas County. This will be a Battle Royale between Kenny Marchant and Pete Sessions. Safe R.
CD28- (Red) Mesquite-Garland. 38-18-36. O55,M45. D/R-49/51. Obama may have won this comfortably but I still see this as very much a swing seat. The absence of a majority race makes this up in the air as to who makes it through to the general. This is probably the most favourable district for Jeb Hensarling to run in without having to carpetbag. Lean D.
CD29- (Green)- Dallas-Irving. 19-15-61. O64-M35. The Metroplex has been crying out for a Hispanic majority seat and it was easy to draw. Domingo Garcia may have a better run in this seat after losing to Marc Veasey in the current CD33. Safe D.
CD30- (Peach)-Dallas-Arlington. 23-43-27. O72, M28. Again, an African-American majority district in DFW is a bridge too far. Still, all the action will be in the primary in this seat and a black candidate would be heavily favoured. Safe D.
CD31 (Toothpaste Green)- Fort Worth. 38-19-37. O55, M45. D/R-51-48. Marc Veasey just won a much safer Fort Worth seat but he would probably do okay here. This would also be cut out for Wendy Davis. Kay Granger could prove a hassle if she ran here, but there's a better district for her. Lean D.
CD32- (Orange) Fort Worth, Cleburne. 75-5-14. O32, M68. Kay Granger would probably be the most likely candidate for this seat, but Joe Barton also represents a decent sized chunk of it. Railroad Commissioner Michael Williams could also run here. Safe R.
CD33- (Cornflower Blue) Denton, Bedford. 72-6-14. O35, R65. Kenny Marchant could also run here, but it's much better suited to Michael Burgess. Safe R.
CD35- (Light purple) Abilene, San Angelo, Midland. 73-3-20. O22, M77. Michael Conaway is the most likely congressman from this district, which is the unfriendliest district to Democrats in the state, and probably the entire country. Safe R.
CD36- (Light orange) Lubbock, Amarillo. 66-5-26. O23, M76. Mac Thornberry and Randy Neugebaeur will have to fight it out in this ultra-Republican, west Texas district. Safe R.