Is This a District

Ink blot or a congressional district?

July 1, 2008

district?Yes, it is. It is Texas's 6th Congressional District. According to the Citizen's Guide to Redistricting:

In 1991, for example, Texas’s 6th Congressional District was designed to include
as many loyal Republicans as possible, in part so that Democrats could control
adjacent districts. As Supreme Court Justice John Paul Stevens described the
district lines:

To the extent that it “begins” anywhere, it is probably near the home
of incumbent Rep. Barton in Ennis, located almost 40 miles southwest
of downtown Dallas. . . . It skips across two arms of Joe Pool Lake, noses
its way into Dallas County, and then travels through predominantly
Republican suburbs of Fort Worth. Nearing the central city, the
borders dart into the downtown area, then retreat to curl around the
city’s northern edge, picking up the airport and growing suburbs
north of town. Worn from its travels into the far northwestern corner
of the county (almost 70 miles, as the crow flies, from Ennis), the
district lines plunge south into Eagle Mountain Lake, traveling along
the waterline for miles, with occasional detours to collect voters that
have built homes along its shores. Refreshed, the district rediscovers
its roots in rural Parker County, then flows back toward Fort Worth
from the southwest for another bite at Republican voters near the
heart of that city. As it does so, the district narrows in places to not
much more than a football field in width. Finally, it heads back
into the rural regions of its fifth county – Johnson – where it finally
exhausts itself only 50 miles from its origin, but hundreds of “miles
apart in distance and worlds apart in culture.” 

Go to the Redistricting Guide...