PHOENIX — The 2020 presidential election is shaping up as a monumental political event. But here in Arizona, the choices that voters will have in 2022 could be one of this year's top political stories.
On this weekend's "Sunday Square Off," our panel of political insiders breaks down the looming battle over how Arizona's congressional and legislative districts will be sliced and diced into a new electoral map for the 2022 vote.
Arizona's last redistricting in 2010 was only settled five fractious years later, by the U.S. Supreme Court.
Nationwide, redrawing legislative districts has devolved into a nonstop stream of legal challenges. The persistent question: Are the political parties putting their interests ahead of voters' constitutional rights?
I'm joined by Jeremy Duda, a politics reporter at the Arizona Mirror who has covered redistricting in Arizona for several years; Doug Cole, a Republican consultant at Phoenix-based HighGround who played a role in the 2010 redistricting; and three-term Democratic State Sen. Martin Quezada of Glendale.
Thanks to rapid population growth over the last decade, Arizona is expected to add one congressional seat, for a total of 10. The number of state legislative districts will be unchanged.
But population growth, demographic changes and other factors will move district boundaries.
We walk through the key questions:
- What's happening behind the scenes right now to set the stage for redistricting?
- How does Arizona draw up new maps and why did the 2010 redistricting go all the way to the U.S. Supreme Court?
- Which officeholders or voters could be winners or losers?
- Whether there's a better way to redraw Arizona's maps and will the 2020 redistricting end up in court?
"Sunday Square Off" airs at 8 a.m. Sundays on 12 News, after NBC's "Meet the Press," with moderator Chuck Todd.
You can find past "Square Off" segments online at 12news.com/YouTube.