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District 37 is located entirely within Travis County. (Texas Redistricting)

Texas lawmakers released the first draft of a new Congressional map that includes two new districts: one in Austin and one in Houston.


Gaining two seats in the U.S. House of Representatives for the next decade, Republican lawmakers started meeting earlier this month to redraw district lines with 38 districts after an influx of Texas' population seen in the 2020 Census.

The new district 37 is entirely in Travis County, lying mainly west of I-35. The proposed map packs the liberal Austin vote into one district as opposed to splitting it up as done in the past.

"Packing" is a practice that could benefit both Republicans and Democrats in this case. Republicans hope to dilute the Democrat influence by packing those votes into one district, but it could also mean Austin will have a voice in Washington to advocate for local interests.

Unlike in Houston's new district 38, district 37 doesn't seem to overlap any current districts, meaning Rep. Michael McCaul and Rep. Lloyd Doggett are safe from being challenged for their seat.

District 37 actually closely resembles Doggett's district he represented until 2003, The Texas Tribune reports, before the area was "cracked" into multiple districts.

This is the first draft to come of the redistricting process with changes expected to follow before reaching Gov. Greg Abbott's desk. View the full proposed map here.

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