LOCAL NEWS

Utah Legislature passes new congressional map

Nov 10, 2021, 11:47 AM | Updated: Mar 18, 2022, 9:39 am

SALT LAKE CITY — The Utah Legislature has passed a bill designating the state’s new congressional districts.

The Senate approved HB2004 Wednesday morning by a 21-7 vote, and the bill moves to Gov. Spencer Cox’s desk for his signature or veto.

Cox said he has no intention of vetoing the bill during a town hall meeting Tuesday night. He added if Utahns don’t like the maps, they should “elect people that have the same interests that (they) do.”

The House approved the map by a 50-22 vote on Tuesday.

Democratic Sen. Jani Iwamoto said Millcreek’s mayor told her the city will become “the new four corners area” of Utah’s congressional districts, and Democratic Sen. Derek Kitchen called the map “shameless political gerrymandering” and “anti-democratic.”

The map, which was developed by the Legislative Redistricting Committee and not the Independent Redistricting Commission, which was created after Utahns approved a ballot initiative in 2018, was met with heated opposition during a committee meeting on Tuesday.

Lawmakers heard more than 100 public comments during that meeting, with most comments critical of the maps.

The group Better Boundaries said the maps created by the Republican-controlled committee were heavily gerrymandered and that it will consider legal and legislative options to get the maps repealed and replaced. 

“We are extremely disappointed the Legislative Redistricting Committee decided to forward maps that don’t meet what Utahns want, which is keeping Utah’s cities and counties intact and keeping politics out of redistricting,” said Katie Wright from Better Boundaries. 

They urged lawmakers to instead approve maps put forward by the Independent Redistricting Commission.  

House Speaker Brad Wilson said they are selecting maps that best serve the state, while Democrats said they will do what they can to change them. 

Minority Leader Brian King said, “It’s bad enough that we have Salt Lake County cut three ways currently. Under the new map, it’s going to be cut four ways and there’s just no good reason for that.” 

Democratic Rep. Andrew Stoddard agreed, “You could keep Salt Lake City whole. You can keep most counties in the state whole or with very minimal splits, and this map doesn’t do that.” 

Wilson was adamant that it was not possible.

“You literally cannot create four congressional districts and not divide up counties. You can’t do it,” he said.

Utah Senate Democrats released a statement about the Congressional Boundaries Designation:

Representation must be close to and created by and for the people. The Legislature’s passage of H.B. 2004 blatantly silences the voices of Utahns through Congressional boundaries that unacceptably divide and crack our communities. Addressing the state’s complex social and economic issues and bringing our voice to Washington DC—with representation from both our rural and urban centers—will not be realized with these imbalanced boundaries, and the people of Utah deserved better today.

As Democrats, we stand for fair, transparent boundaries and made several attempts to uphold Congressional proposals submitted by the Independent Redistricting Commission. The Congressional map that passed the Legislature’s is an unacceptable abuse of power that did not include all voices nor meaningful input from the public. This discourages participation in democracy and in the legislative process. We are disheartened by the Congressional map and stand with the people of Utah.

KSL 5 TV Live

Top Stories

Local News

(Unified Police Department Millcreek Precinct)...
Madison Swenson

Police searching for man missing from Millcreek area

Authorities are asking for the public's help in locating a 43-year-old man who has been missing from the Millcreek area of Salt Lake County since Thursday afternoon.
18 hours ago
...
Ayanna Likens

Utah Treasure Hunts launch another $20,000 race

The race is on – Utah Treasure Hunts launched another quest with $20,000 up for grabs.
18 hours ago
...
Ladd Egan

Amid increased need and dwindling supplies, Tabitha’s Way holds food drive on Saturday

Tabitha’s Way food pantry says donations are down at the same time that demand for food assistance has gone up.
18 hours ago
Police located a car involved in an American Fork, Utah parking lot shooting. A child in the back s...
Larry D. Curtis

BREAKING: Man wanted in AF AMBER Alert now in police custody

A 29-year-old man who was shot at by police and eluded law enforcement for several days, has now been booked into the Utah County Jail.
18 hours ago
(Aubrey Shafer/KSL TV)...
Madison Swenson

One critical, two serious after auto-pedestrian crash in Salt Lake City

The public has been asked to avoid 400 West in Salt Lake City due to a "critical injury" crash. 
18 hours ago
(Matt Rascon/KSL TV)...
Matt Rascon

Leaders tout new project as most sustainable, walkable community in Utah

A new FrontRunner station opened in Vineyard Friday, and it's part of a new project that state and local officials say is set to become the most sustainable and walkable community in Utah.
18 hours ago

Sponsored Articles

tips how to quit smoking...

7 Tips How to Quit Smoking | Quitting Smoking Might be One of the Hardest Things You Ever Do but Here’s Where You Can Start

Quitting smoking cigarettes can be incredibly difficult. Here are 7 tips how to quit smoking to help you on your quitting journey.
Photo: Storyblocks...
Blue Stakes of Utah 811

Blue Stakes of Utah 811: 5 Reasons To Call 811 Before You Dig When Working in Your Yard

Call before you dig. Even at home, you could end up with serious injuries or broken utilities just because you didn't call Blue Stakes of Utah 811.
Days of...
Days of '47 Rodeo

TRIVIA: How well do you know your rodeo? Take this quiz before you go to the Days of ’47!

The Utah Days of ’47 Rodeo presented by Zions Bank is a one-of-a-kind Gold Medal Rodeo being held July 20-23, 25 at 7:30 PM. The Days of ’47 Rodeo How well do you know your rodeo trivia? Take the quiz to test your know-all before heading out to the Days of ’47 Rodeo at the […]
cyber security through multi factor authentication setup...
Les Olson IT

How multi factor authentication setup helps companies stay safe

Multi factor authentication (MFA) setup is an important security measure that every company should implement for their workers. It’s also wise to install it for your personal and home accounts.
...
Lighting Design

Check out these stunning lamps with stained glass shades

Lamps with stained glass shades are statement pieces that are more than simply aesthetic. They also meet a functional requirement: to light up a room.
Address Bar of internet browser shows internet access...
AARP Utah

Utah voters 50+ support increased access to Internet

The AARP surveyed Utah voters aged 50 plus about internet access and if they support the expansion of broadband, especially in rural areas currently lacking it.
Utah Legislature passes new congressional map