Supporters Call for Baltimore County to draw a new map, like the counties proposed for Jim Crow – CBS Baltimore

BALTIMORE (WJZ) – A group of advocates on Friday called for the Baltimore County Council to redraw the boundaries for their seven council districts, saying a recently announced court-ordered proposal does not provide a single district. second majority for Blacks.

The speakers, many of whom were plaintiffs in a lawsuit last year challenging an earlier map or representative groups, compared the proposal the panel submitted earlier this month to the Jim Crow law that separates it. Racism perpetuated racial segregation in the 19th and 20th centuries.

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Dana Vickers Shelley, ACLU executive director of Maryland, plaintiff in the lawsuit as a county resident, said: “Baltimore County Council has to make its own way into the 21st century and leave a trail of Jim Crow in the air. our time. “What they’re doing is they have the shameful audacity to push a plantation story that says you can overcome the delusions of black voters and black voices, my voice and those of another, with a plan to maintain white veto power over the choices of [Black, Indigenous and People of Color] votes. ”

Ericka McDonald, co-chair of the Federation of Women Voters of Baltimore County, said Friday that the map doesn’t go far enough to address concerns about representing Black voters. Since District 4 was created in 2001, no other county has elected a Black candidate, she said.

McDonald went on to say that there are lingering signs of racial inequality in the county, with Black residents suffering disproportionate numbers of vehicle stops, lower home ownership rates and poor outcomes. worse than in public schools.

“Why do our council members continue to act like they are above the law by refusing to comply with the Voting Rights Act?” “And why do they refuse to face the ongoing challenges of racial inequality in Baltimore County today?” she asked.

In February, a federal judge put forward the previous proposal of the council and ordered the county to attract new counties to comply with the Voting Rights Act.

Under the council’s new proposal, District 2, which includes communities located just outside the northwest border of the City of Baltimore, and District 4, along the Liberty Road corridor on the west side of the county, would have dropout populations. majority vote is a minority. Of those two districts, only District 4 has a black majority.

District 1, located in the southwestern part of the county, stretching from I-70 to I-95, will have a roughly equal split between white and non-white voters, with the latter having a majority low votes. White voters will represent a 49.87% majority, while Black voters will represent 27.39% of the voting population and Asian Americans will represent 11.16% of the vote.

Districts 3, 5, 6 and 7 will have a white majority.

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Countywide, whites represent 55.12% of the voting population, compared with blacks 28.62%, Asian Americans 6.29% and Hispanics 5.99% . Those who identified as being part of two or more races accounted for 3.27% of the voting population, and residents of “other” race were 0.44%. Native Americans and Pacific Islanders were 0.24% and 0.03% of the population, respectively.

When you include children, whites make up only a large portion of the county’s population, at 51.2%, and nearly 30% of the population is Black.

Baltimore County Councilmember Julian E. Jones Jr., the only Black member of the legislature, said the new boundaries follow the order of U.S. District Judge Lydia Kay Griggsby.

“As was the case when we passed our Regional Redistricting Plan last December, it was a very difficult process and we looked at a number of mapping scenarios to try to achieve the Map in the future. The Council could then reach a consensus and that would be true of tradition. and the principles of legal redistribution of small and contiguous counties with essentially equal populations; recognize the importance of keeping communities intact; and provide more opportunities for Black voters in the County to elect the representatives of their choice,” he said. “We did it with this Map.”

The minority majority seat in District 1 is opening up, Jones said, with Councilman Tom Quirk, who is white, deciding not to run for re-election.

District 2, which Jones says is “now a minority majority” and has a larger share of Black voters, is now represented by Israeli Councilman “Izzy” Patoka. According to county data, whites will make up 45.8% of the county’s voting population, compared with blacks 41.22%, Hispanics 5.52%, and Asian Americans 4. .12% and residents identifying as two or more races was 2.65%.

Jones represents District 4.

Vickers Shelley says the county will have to act quickly to adopt a new map soon primaries scheduled for July 19. The plaintiffs in the lawsuit, a coalition that includes the ACLU of Maryland, the Baltimore County branch of the NAACP, the Federation of Women Voters of Baltimore County, have produced multiple maps that are compliant with the Voting Rights Act, she said.

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“We will no longer accept Jim Crow voting policies to dominate this county,” she said. Supporters Call for Baltimore County to draw a new map, like the counties proposed for Jim Crow – CBS Baltimore

Jake Nichol

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