The Democrats are crying about about Republican redistricting down in Chattanooga.
Upset Democrats, however, are threatening to march into court, saying if the plan holds it would force Brown and Favors to run against each other if they both seek re-election.
"If they put Tommie Brown and JoAnne Favors together, we're going to sue," House Democratic Caucus Chairman Mike Turner warned. "They're trying to disenfranchise minorities down there."....
...."This is pretty definite," Favors said of GOP plans. "I was told it was going to be four Republican seats and one Democratic seat."...
..."That's what we understand -- the 28th and 29th will be merged," Brown said. "They not only take out a Democratic seat. It's a double blow. You also eliminate one African-American from the Legislature."
Jerold McCormick counters.
"This idea that we're looking to disenfranchise minorities is pulling the race card out of the bottom of the deck," he said. "It's unfair and it's untrue. Now having said that, if Mike Turner would like Tommie Brown and JoAnne Favors to be in different districts, I will be glad to work on that. I can put one of them in my district and they can run against me."
He noted his district will remain a GOP-leaning area.
Expect to see more of this sort of issue. The options are limited. I know in Knoxville the same thing could happen. With shifting populations and the need to put more people in to Democrat districts, Do you combine Harry Tindell with Joe Armstrong or do you put one of them in with a Republican? Bill Dunn v. Harry Tindell looks like the more reasonable possibility with the majority minority rules keeping Joe Armstrong where he is. That, and or dramatically shift populations to where Harry's districts is largely Republican. So much so that there is nearly no chance for him to win again (55-58% Republican leaning).
Those are the choices in many cases. Democrats can cry, yell and scream pull the race card all they want but with the laws and the population shifts out of Democrat districts there are really only 3 cards on the table for many Democrats. Merge with a Republican. Merge with another Democrat or have so many republicans put in their districts they can not win.