OKLAHOMA CITY (KFOR) — Oklahoma Governor Kevin Stitt signed legislation approving new voting maps in the state.
Every 10 years, lines for all the state and US congressional seats have to be adjusted as new population numbers come in. Those new districts setting up battle lines between Republicans and Democrats.
With 2020 Census data coming in late thanks to the pandemic, Governor Kevin Stitt calling a special session to pass bills to redistrict state senate and house seats but to also redraw lines for U.S. Congressional districts.
The bills created controversy and claims of gerrymandering.
Stitt says the new congressional maps keep nearly 90 percent of Oklahomans in the same district, as well, as major military bases.
“I am grateful to members of the Oklahoma Legislature who carried out their constitutional responsibility and redrawing these district maps,” said Governor Stitt. “Following an open and transparent process that included public input, these maps were passed with majority support in both the House and the Senate and I am pleased to execute the will of Oklahomans by signing these new maps into law.”
The redistricting legislation includes:
- SB 1X creates the State Senate Redistricting Act of 2021 which sets State Senate district boundaries based on final 2020 Census data and establishes residency requirements for the 2022 Election.
- SB 2X adjusts residency requirements for county commissioners for the 2022 election to require candidates to be a registered voter within the district they wish to run for by December 31, 2021.
- SB 4X directs county election boards to conduct regular or special elections after April 5, 2022 to permit the Election Board time to implement the provisions of redistricting
- SB 5X Adjusts candidate political party registration requirements to permit potential candidates to register under their chosen political affiliation in their district of choice by December 31, 2021 to run for office in 2022.
- HB 1001 creates the State House of Representatives Redistricting Act of 2021 which sets State House district boundaries based on final 2020 Census data and establishes residency requirements for the 2022 election.
- HB 1002 creates the Oklahoma Congressional Redistricting Act of 2021 which establishes the boundaries of the state’s five Congressional Districts and directs the Election Boar