Monday, January 23, 2012

LATFOR lines dropping soon

The southern end of Oppenheimer's district.
The new lines reportedly give the district Eastchester.
The first public draft of the new state legislative lines will (probably) come out later today, drawn by LATFOR, the agency charged with the project.

We haven't seen a map yet, but from sources we've spoken to, state Sen. Suzi Oppenheimer's (D) district will be expanded to include republican-heavy Eastchester. State Sen. Jeff Klein (IDC) will be giving up Eastchester and taking over all of the Bronx's Riverdale, which current is split between him and two other senators.

Oppenheimer is retiring this year, so Republicans hope by adding Eastchester to the district, they'll be able to snag the seat away from the Democrats.

From what one of our Democratic sources pointed out, if Klein had anything to do with this change, that would mean he has directly helped the Republicans expand their slim majority. Klein's creation of the Independent Democratic Conference and his involvement with the Republican party last year has already irked Democrats, so this move certainly wouldn't be of any help to mend relations.

Of course, this is just the first public draft, and there's also a chance Gov. Andrew Cuomo vetoes the lines altogether and sends them to be drawn by a court, which could create chaos.


  1. So it's not as though the Senate GOP couldn't figure out (independent of Sen. Klein) that giving Espaillat a more Latino district and enlarging Klein's Bronx portion would enable them to add Republican-leaning Eastchester to what's left of the Oppenheimer district. Why not accuse Espaillat of wanting to jettison Riverdale? Neither accusation or suspicion is probably true.

    I'm sure the GOP packed minority districts to free up residents for "lighter" GOP-leaning districts. It's been a part of the Republican playbook across the United States.

  2. That's a good point; maybe Sen. Espaillat did ask for a more Latino district. Despite his surprising success winning Riverdale in 2010, it would just be easier for him to focus on the Latino vote rather than the Jewish vote. That being said, what kind of power does a rookie Democratic state senator have? Also, we don't know what Espaillat's district looks like, this Eastchester news was the only news we've heard thus far. Hopefully the maps come out today so we can have a better understanding.

    Also like to point out, which wasn't mentioned in the post, LATFOR would be following protocol by trying to unite single neighborhoods under single officials, by giving one state senator all of Riverdale.

  3. Please don't distort my point (or my sarcasm). I was actually challenging the notion that Sen. Klein had anything to do with changes you reported. The Oppenheimer district is leaning GOP given her close 2010 re-election. Taking Republican Eastchester from Klein forced them to give Klein Riverdale and shift Espaillat to take in more Latinos. The Espaillat district was undersized and needed to grow. That allows GOP to comply with VRA by adding the growing latino population to his district. That was the point of my closing paragraph above.

    1. The 37th SD, as it currently exists, is not leaning GOP. The closeness of the 2010 race was a statement about Sen. Oppenheimer, not the district. She lost the Town of Rye, which went about 70-30 for Gov. Cuomo; she barely won (126 votes), and was the worst vote-getter, in the Town of Mamaroneck, her hometown which gave both Cuomo and Assemblyman Latimer 70+% and 4000 vote margins; her margin was 4500 below Cuomo's in White Plains and 3000 below in Ossining. Throughout the district, she ran well behind the rest of the Democratic ticket. If Oppenheimer had performed at ticket-average levels in the district, she would have won easily. Only her weak performance against a well-funded, but previously unknown, opponent, not a GOP trend across the board in this district, made the race close. (For complete Westchester 2010 results, see

  4. Forget about Oppenheimer - she ran poorly in 2010. George Latimer, a highly popular Assemblyman, can win the S.D. even with Eastchester included.