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Politics & Government

Redistricting Commission votes to advance proposed map to final stage of process

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The map is now open for 45 days of public comment.

A new state Senate map is a step closer to becoming reality.

The Michigan Independent Citizens Redistricting Commission voted Monday to advance the draft map for another public comment period. The new lines that would be fairer to Democrats than those drawn by Republican lawmakers in the last two decades. It's the first time the panel has submitted a plan for the closing 45-day public comment period.

The commission followed calls to split Ann Arbor in half, but leaves majority-Black Detroit divided into districts shared with the suburbs. It also separates Midland from Midland County and loops it into a so-called “Tri-cities” district with Saginaw and Bay City.

Commissioner Anthony Eid spoke in favor of the map ahead of the vote.

"[The map] supports communities of interest. Supports all of the VRA considerations that we have been looking at."

Critics have expressed concerns the map would violate the Voting Rights Act since there would be no majority Black districts.

It's unclear if commissioners may also offer an alternative Senate proposal later in the week or stick with one map.

Following 45 days of public comment, the commission will be able to vote on whether to publish the map.

The commission also voted to advance multiple congressional maps.

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