Valley politicians looking at new campaign with new congressional maps

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Wednesday, December 22, 2021
Valley politicians looking at new campaign with new congressional maps
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New Congressional districts have been approved by The California Citizens Redistricting Commission.

FRESNO, Calif. (KFSN) -- Fresno Congressman Jim Costa represents the 16th district, which includes Fresno, Madera, Los Banos and Atwater.

The Democrat announced he will run for re-election in 2022 but in the newly redrawn 21st district, which includes cities in both Fresno and Tulare County.

"I wanted to continue to represent the City of Fresno as my base, so that has always been the case," he said. "This is the third reapportionment I've been involved with in Congress."

A special election will be held next year to replace Republican Devin Nunes in the 22nd District. Nunes retired to head Trump Media.

Fresno State Political Science Professor Thomas Holyoke called it "bizarre" because whoever wins the special election in the current 22nd district will then have to immediately run for re-election in the newly redrawn district with a different electorate.

"I don't think that district has become a lock for Democrats," he said. "It seems, from what I can tell, that it's probably going to be a little more Democratic-friendly than it was."

Holyoke says Republican Congressman David Valadao of the current 21st district is capable of winning re-election in the new 22nd District.

He adds newcomers could also benefit in some races because incumbents won't be as well-known in districts where boundaries have changed dramatically.

"That gives a bigger opening to challenger candidates than you would normally get so for some people, this could be seen as a great big opportunity," he said.

The redistricting commission redrew state political maps based on census data.

The process occurs every decade.