EL PASO, Texas (KTSM) — A new Republican proposal strips El Paso of a seat in the Texas House of Representatives as lawmakers review redistricting throughout the state.
On Thursday, a new map released by the Texas Legislative Council revealed a new political layout for the El Paso area. In it, House District 76, currently represented by Democrat Claudia Ordaz Perez, would be removed and her constituents would be rolled-into another district.
Redistricting is the process by which lawmakers draw political boundaries based on population for public offices to represent. The redistricting process happens every ten years when the U.S. Census conducts its survey of population changes throughout the country.
The plan adds Ordaz Perez’s constituents to House District 77, currently represented by Democrat Lina Ortega. If approved, the plan would put the two Democrats against each other if they both decided to run for reelection.
Ordaz Perez and Ortega denounced the proposal in response to the proposal filed by House Redistricting Committee Chairman Todd Hunger a Republican from Corpus Christi.
“The Texas House map filed today reduces El Paso’s representation by drawing two Hispanic, women incumbent members who represent border districts into one House district,” Ortega said. “This is a direct attack on our border community and weakens the representation of minorities in the Texas Legislature.”
Ordaz Perez echoed Ortega’s comments saying the proposal puts to Hispanic women against each other and vowed to continue her efforts in voting rights.
“I refuse to sell out my values or those of the people I represent for political gain,” she said. “Let me be absolutely clear – I fully intend to return to the Texas House in the next legislative session to fight for the people of El Paso.”