Thursday, October 21, 2021

Local state senate district could get a whole new county with redistricting

Current Texas Senate District 12 map

Texas Senate District 12 would experience some significant changes if a proposed redistricting map is approved.

Currently, District 12 makes up the southern half of Denton County and parts of north and west Tarrant County, all majority Republican territory.

The Texas Senate kicked off the decennial redistricting process Saturday, releasing the first draft of its own members’ district maps, which shore up the strength of the Republican majority. On Monday, the Texas Legislature began meeting for a 30-day special session dedicated to redrawing political maps based on the latest census data, which showed people of color fueled 95% of Texas’ population growth over the past decade.

The first draft of the Senate map was authored by Sen. Joan Huffman, R-Houston, chair of the Senate Redistricting Committee, and it would significantly change District 12’s makeup, including adding a whole new county.

In the proposed new map, District 12 loses parts of southeast Denton County and west Tarrant County, but it gains all of Wise County, northwest Denton County and a portion of northwest Dallas County.

The District 12 seat is currently held by Jane Nelson, R-Flower Mound, who will not seek reelection next year. Texas House District 63 Rep. Tan Parker, R-Flower Mound, the frontrunner to succeed Nelson, released a statement Monday lauding the proposed new map for District 12.

“I am excited about having Dallas County in the new District boundary,” Parker said in a statement. “While my House District is in neighboring Denton County, I have worked closely with the Dallas County Republican Party over many years and built strong working relationships there.”

Parker announced the endorsements from three former Dallas GOP chairmen:

  • Rodney Anderson, Dallas GOP chair 2019-21 and former state representative
  • Wade Emmert, Dallas GOP chair 2011-16
  • Bob Driegert, Dallas GOP chair 1992-2002

“Each of these Dallas County leaders have made a significant impact on the Republican Party in Dallas County and in other areas of service for our great stat,” Parker said in the statement. “I am honored to have earned their trust and support of our campaign. They know I am working hard to keep Texas Red and will serve the people across the new Senate District 12.”

Part of this news story originally appeared in The Texas Tribune at https://www.texastribune.org/2021/09/18/texas-senate-redistricting-map/.

Mark Smith
Mark Smith is the Digital Editor of The Cross Timbers Gazette.

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