Could Garamendi, McNerney be odd men out in California Congressional Redistricting?

california congressional redistricting, ca-07, ca-10, ca-11, ca-13, John Garamendi, Jerry McNerney, George Miller, Pete StarkRedistricting Partners is closely following Congressional as well as State Senate and Assembly districts as they are redrawn after the 2010 Census. Preliminary maps indicate Democrat incumbents, Rep. John Garamendi (CA-10), and Jerry McNerney (CA-11), may need to either find a new home or battle fellow incumbents to return to Washington after the 2012 elections. See? It’s good to have seniority!

According to current visualizations, CD-10, John Garamendi’s current seat, will morph into a newly drawn district favorable to Rep George Miller, as CA-07 will move out of Napa/Solano and encompass most of Contra Costa County. Carpetbagging aside, Garamendi will find his Walnut Grove address no longer in the same district that includes Walnut Creek, but in a new district located mostly within Solano County. But, in fine gerrymandering fashion, that new district will also include a nice chunk of Democratic votes in Pittsburg. Meanwhile, Jerry McNerney’s (CA-11) district will be mashed into Rep. Pete Stark’s (CA-13) district that extends from San Leandro and Castro Valley to Fremont.

In effect, —if these preliminaries hold—, the district of veteran Miller (CA-07) with an assist from Barbara Lee (CA-09), will gobble up CA-10 and force John Garamendi to face Democratic party leader Miller in a primary or compete against another Democrat in the new Solano County district from his Walnut Grove residence.

Meanwhile, the morphing of Pete Stark’s district will change entirely the dynamic of the CA-11 election from a contest defined by the GOP trying to regain the lost Pombo seat to a McNerney-Stark Democrat primary that will pit two vastly different constituencies from Western and Eastern Alameda including parts of San Joaquin and Stanislaus counties.

Still, according to experts, strong Democrats won’t be losing elections any time soon. “Thompson is golden, Garamendi is golden, Miller is golden,” says Paul Mitchell of Redistricting Partners. “Stark and McNerney are drawn in together, but the nearby san Joaquin county seat is strong dem. Both Garamendi and Mcnerney could win that.”

Another plan under consideration involves a new district for Miller that begins in Marin and reaches across the Bay into Richmond across a chunk of Contra Costa County. But this plan is based on whether a portion of San Francisco joins a possible district for Woolsey in Southern Marin.

Whatever seeps out from under the gerrymander rock, new district lines could very well change by the release of the drafts to be released Friday. Then the real fun begins. Depending on whose ox gets gored, expect lots of changes before final versions are issued by Aug. 15.

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