Published: Feb. 15, 2022
By: Allison Kadlubar, Alex Tirado and Lura Stabiler, LSU Manship School News Service
BATON ROUGE — Two weeks of debate, public testimony and pleas from activists for greater minority representation culminated in a 40-minute Senate floor meeting Monday that advanced two Republican bills mostly maintaining the status quo of the state Senate and Supreme Court district maps.
State representatives then voted 82-21 Monday evening to leave the state House with the same number of minority-majority districts, 29 of 105, that it has now. All of the vote margins in both chambers were large enough to override gubernatorial vetoes if they hold going forward.
“It took a while to get to where we are right now,” Senate President Page Cortez, R- Lafayette, said. “I’m glad that the hawks and the doves kept to themselves today.”
Senate Bill 1, authored by Cortez, kept the state Senate map largely intact with only 11 of the 39 seats representing majority-Black districts.
Sen. Gary Carter, D-New Orleans, pleaded for one final chance to increase minority representation. He said he had spent the weekend meeting with elected and unelected constituents concerning district lines.
“These aren’t just lines on a page,” Carter said. “These are people we represent, who we love, who we fight for, who invite us into their homes.”
Read more at BIZ Magazine