One of the worst gerrymanders this cycle was Pennsylvania. If the maps were to hypothetically be redrawn for 2014 and the districts to be more clean looking, how would it go? Maybe Illinoyed and the like would know more than me. For those posting on RRH, feel free to cross post it (although be sure to delete the nastier swipes)
Also, if one wants a better view of the pictures, just simply click on it.
District 1 (Blue)
39.2 Wh, 39.1 Bl, 14.6 Hisp, 4.9 Asn, 2 Oth, 0.2 Nat
Comments: Under this map, Alyson Schwartz is the odd (wo)man out. Her residence in Jenkintown is in this district but she would be running for governor, so it would be a moot point anyways. This is a safe district for the democrat paired up with her, Bob Brady.
45.3 Bl, 36.1 Wh, 9.1 Hisp, 7.1 Asn, 2.1 Oth, 0.2 Nat
Comments: Obviously safe dem district based in the black wards of SW Philly. Could Chaka Fattah eventually become Appropriations chairman?
3 (Dark Magenta)
91 Wh, 4.6 Bl, 2 Hisp, 1.5 Oth, 0.8 Asn, 0.1 Nat
Comments: Hodgepodge of areas in NW Pennsylvania. Erie has largely remained dem while Butler County, unlike most of Western Pennsylvania, was never dem to begin with. The rest of the district is quintessential Western PA. Balancing this out, you have a marginal, slightly GOP leaning seat. Dahlkemper strikes me as a weak candidate and Kelly would survive a rematch against her. In a worse year with a better opponent, Kelly could lose however.
91.2 Wh, 4.3 Bl, 1.7 Asn, 1.4 Oth, 1.2 Hisp, 0.1 Nat
Comments: This is one of those districts that are exhibit A in why American voters need more choices in politics and why multiple parties should be the way to go. You have an ancestrally dem area trending pub but they seem to be stuck with the wrong kind of pub. This is an area that I would assume would elect a Chris Smith type republican – fiscally moderate, socially conservative. Instead, this would be Keith Rothfus’s district – a member in good standing with the John Birch, I mean Club For Growth. His tenure in this district largely rests on whether Beaver County returns to its dem roots. Unfortunately this is one of those districts like TX 1 which was drawn to dislodge an incumbent dem, and once dislodged, the area would be pub for eternity.
94.3 Wh, 2.2 Bl, 1.7 Hisp, 1 Oth, 0.6 Asn, 0.2 Nat
This is the most rural districts in the state and the second most republican. Both Marino and Thompson live in this district. My assumption is that Marino would run in the 17th and Thompson, who was already pretty safe, is even safer
80.2 Wh, 12.6 Hisp, 3.8 Bl, 1.9 Asn, 1.3 Oth, 0.1 Nat
Comments: This is basically the old PA 6 before the 01 remap. The district is based in Reading, but unlike past iterations, takes in parts of deeply republican Lancaster County. No incumbent lives here to my knowledge but Pitts would be smart to run here since I doubt he could win a member-on-member primary with Gerlach. Pitts has gotten below 60% four times in his career, and could be toppled under the right circumstances.
7 (Dark Gray)
68.5 Wh, 22.1 Bl, 4.5 Asn, 2.9 Hisp, 1.8 Oth, 0.1 Nat
Comments: This district is made hopelessly blue. If Edgar or Sestak are looking for a comeback, they have the right of first refusal.
8 (Slate Blue)
78.3 Wh, 7.2 Bl, 6.6 Hisp, 6.0 Asn, 1.8 Oth, 0.1 Nat
Comments: This is based in Bucks County and the white middle class areas of NE Philadelphia. Obama’s % moves up to 57.1, but Fitzpatrick is a formidable candidate. He seems to be a Chris Smith type republican, which plays well here. A non-Bookvar candidate could maybe beat him though.
92.2 Wh, 2.4 Hisp, 2.3 Bl, 1.8 Asn, 1.3 Oth, 0.1 Nat
Comments: Although the addition of (relatively) liberal State College tempers the district somewhat, this is still the most GOP district in the state and a lot of this territory hasn’t elected a dem to congress since the nineteenth century. Safe R
10 (Deep Pink)
87 Wh, 5.9 Hisp, 4.5 Bl, 1.3 Asn, 1.3 Oth, 0.1 Nat
Comments: Although the numbering is district 10, Cartwright’s home is in this district. He should be safe here.
84.3 Wh, 8.8 Hisp, 3.8 Bl, 1.6 Asn, 1.4 Oth, 0.1 Nat
Comments: This is Barletta’s district. Although it is considerably more GOP than the 2000s PA 11, it is less republican than the current one. He seems to be a good but not great fit for this district. He should be ok barring a 1974-like meltdown.
12 (Cornflower Blue)
95.3 Wh, 2.1 Bl, 1.1 Hisp, 0.9 Oth, 0.5 Asn, 0.1 Nat
Comments: This looks more like the 12th district before the 01 remap. Anchored in ancestrally dem Johnstown, it takes in a few ancestrally republican areas, ancestrally dem Westmoreland and historically marginal Armstrong and Indiana. The district seems to have gone off the deep end politically and Critz would have a tough time holding this district.
13 (Dark Salmon)
84.5 Wh, 7.6 Hisp, 4.6 Bl, 1.6 Oth, 1.5 Asn, 0.1 Nat
Comments: This is a York based district. The area was pretty marginal until the late 1960s. For a period between 1954 and 1966, seemed to throw its congressman out every few years. For awhile the district was represented by archconservative congressman George Goodling. After he ran something like seventeen points behind Nixon in 1972 and fearing defeat, he retired in 1974. His son, a more moderate republican, narrowly won the seat in 1974 and the district has been safe R since. Perry seems more of a George Goodling than a Todd Platts or William Goodling; but he should be safe.
74.6 Wh, 19 Bl, 2.6 Asn, 2.1 Oth, 1.6 Hisp, 0.1 Nat
Comments: Western Pennsylvania seems to have trended republican in the past dozen or so years, but this is the only area that has resisted that trend. It is based in central Pittsburgh and the industrial towns to the east of it. Doyle is obviously safe here.
15 (Dark Orange)
76.4 Wh, 11.7 Hisp, 5.5 Bl, 4.7 Asn, 1.6 Oth, 0.1 Nat
Comments: This is a hodgepodge of suburban and industrial working class areas. The district’s PVI is not much different from the 2000s district’s numbers. Dent managed to win tough races in 06 and 08, so he should be ok here. If he were to retire, a dem could win it though.
82.9 Wh, 5.8 Bl, 5.5 Hisp, 4.3 Asn, 1.5 Oth, 0.1 Nat
This is a Chester County based district and looks like the PA 5 of the 70s and 80s. Pitts and Gerlach both live here, but I doubt Pitts would want to run against him in a primary. Gerlach had a few close calls in the old, more dem leaning PA-6, but this district is more marginal. He would be relatively safe here, especially since Obama tanked in Chester County.
17 (Dark Slate Blue)
82.6 Wh, 7.8 Bl, 5.5 Hisp, 2.3 Asn, 1.6 Oth, 0.1 Nat
Comments: This is the most urban district in what could be called the “T” but its still a republican district. It resembles more the pre-2000s PA 17 and my guess is that Marino runs here to avoid a primary with Thompson
91.8 Wh, 4 Bl, 1.5 Asn, 1.4 Oth, 1.2 Hisp, 0.1 Nat
Comments: This is similar to the old Thomas Morgan/Austin Murphy/Frank Mascara district. This would probably be Murphy’s district. The PVI drops a couple points to the where Obama narrowly won it. For a republican, he is a pretty good fit for this district. A more conservative republican though would probably lose here.