FACT CHECK: House Redistricting Debate – as of 12:15pm
JACKSON – The Mississippi Republican Party has issued the following analysis of today’s ongoing redistricting debate in the Mississippi House of Representatives:

CLAIM: The House Republican Alternative Plan was drawn without public input or behind closed doors, as suggested by Rep. Willie Perkins (D-Greenwood) and claimed by Rep. Adrienne Wooten (D-Canton).
FACT: The House Republican Alternative Plan is based solely on the House Consensus Plan, designed by House Democrats. The House Republican Alternative Plan merely corrects issues of fairness and legality that are deficient in the House Consensus Plan. It is not a new map designed from whole cloth and therefore maintains much of the input that was given on an individual basis by members as well as public comments made with regards to the House Consensus Plan.

CLAIM: The House Republican Alternative Plan is designed to elect a Republican Speaker, as stated by Rep. Willie Perkins (D-Greenwood).
FACT: The House Republican Alternative Plan provides no partisan advantage to either party, unlike the House Consensus Plan which uses an unconstitutional variance in deviation to benefit Democrats and bring disadvantage to Republicans (a gap of 2.3% based on partisanship of incumbent). The House Republican Alternative Plan corrects the partisan deviation gap to 0.1%, now a statistically insignificant factor.

CLAIM: The House Republican Alternative Plan dissolves the district currently represented by Rep. David Norquist (D-Cleveland), moving it to the Hattiesburg area. Norquist stated that he “still [has] a district but I have to move to Forrest to run in it.”
FACT: The House Consensus Plan, designed by House Democrats, dissolved the district of Rep. Jim Ellington (R-Jackson), creating from it a new majority-minority district located in Walthall and Marion counties – despite the fact that the new district location lost population since 2000 and did not require a new district.
In contrast, the Delta region lost over 44,000 residents since 2000, or roughly equivalent to two districts, and the former District 28 was drawn as a long, gerrymandered district under the House Consensus Plan to try to preserve it despite the population loss that should have caused the seat to be dissolved.

CLAIM: Rep. Adrienne Wooten (D-Canton) commented, “When you all sat down and tweaked this plan did you consider if there was non-dilution of black voting streams? I doubt it.”
FACT: The House Republican Alternative Plan corrected several issues of fairness and unconstitutionality in the House Consensus Plan, designed by House Democrats. Specifically, the House Republican Alternative Plan splits fewer precincts, contains more compact districts, better reflects population shifts since 2000, and corrects an unconstitutional partisan violation of the one-man, one-vote principle. In doing so, the House Republican Alternative Plan maintained 38 districts where black population was over 60%, the same number of districts found in the House Consensus Plan.

House Republican Alternative Plan (HRAP) Quick Hits:
? The House Republican Alternative Plan (HRAP) contains only 164 precinct splits, which is less than the House Consensus Plan (HCP) which splits 193 precincts. The HRAP also contains fewer zero-population splits than the HCP.

The HRAP splits only 143 precincts with population, where the HCP splits 171 precincts with population (a 16% improvement).
? The HRAP’s proposed districts are more compact than the districts proposed in the HCP.

Using eight different methods of measuring compactness, the HRAP proved to be more compact than the HCP on all eight measures.

? The HRAP better reflects population shifts since 2000 than the HCP. Since 2000, the population in the Delta has declined by 44,428, or the equivalent of 2 districts. Yet, the HCP does not dissolve a single district in this region. Instead, it gerrymanders eastward robbing population from high growth areas to buoy districts that should have been dissolved.

? The HRAP creates new districts in high growth areas like DeSoto County and the Hattiesburg region, replacing districts in areas of declining population like the Delta. The proposed new Hattiesburg district witnessed a 21% increase in population since 2000.

? The HRAP corrects partisan inequities in deviation built into the HCP. Under the HCP, the average deviation of districts held by Democrat incumbents is -1.0%, while the average deviation of districts held by Republican incumbents is +1.3%. This means, under the HCP, the “one-man, one-vote” rule is violated on a partisan basis.

However, under the HRAP, the average deviation of districts held by Democrat incumbents is 0.0%, while the average deviation of districts held by Republican incumbents is -0.1% — a statistically insignificant difference.