Georgia Democrats hoping to prevent Republicans from controlling the 2020 redistricting process have pre-filed legislation that would remove the power of reapportionment from the General Assembly. Instead, under a bill authored by state Sen. Pat Gardner of Atlanta, reapportionment would be handled by an independent bipartisan commission. Congressional and statewide House and Senate districts are redrawn every 10 years based on new U.S. Census numbers. The majority political party in the legislature controls the redistricting process, and Republicans have held large majorities under Georgia’s gold dome for more than a decade.
Until 2002, Democrats dominated the state House and Senate for more than a century.
Democrats had a chance to strengthen their position at the capitol in 2014, when Jason Carter mounted a challenge to unseat incumbent Gov. Nathan Deal. That would have given Carter and Democrats two election cycles — 2016 and 2018 — to elect more party members to the legislature before the 2020 census.