Rep. Jesse Jackson Jr.'s District Grows
Illinois Gov. Pat Quinn signed into law Friday a map outlining new Congressional lines. Representation for Chicago Heights, Homewood, Flossmoor and Olympia Fields doesn't change.
Chicago Heights and Homewood-Flossmoor are still in the 2nd Congressional District under the new map signed into law by Gov. Pat Quinn Friday, but Jesse Jackson Jr.'s has grown significantly, with its southern border now extended past Kankakee.
Jackson, long a champion of a south suburban airport for the potential jobs and economic development the project could bring to the region, would now have the airport footprint and surrounding land firmly within his district.
On a map, the district looks like a staircase, widening to the west as it goes south. The farthest western border cuts into Reddick. The Democratic-drawn map of new congressional boundaries is designed to reverse Republican gains in last year’s election, according to the Chicago Tribune.
More than just reflecting population shifts, the map lines also reflect the political power of controlling the cartography.
The map pits some incumbent Republicans against others, stretches boundaries to allow incumbent Chicago Democrats to reach out into the GOP-leaning suburbs or gives GOP congressmen vast swatches of new unfamiliar territory.
GOP congressmen said they will take the map to court.
“I have carefully reviewed the congressional redistricting map. This map is fair, maintains competitiveness within congressional districts, and protects the voting rights of minority communities," the Tribune quoted Quinn saying.