Jeffries rips ‘redistricting chaos’ in New York

Rep. Hakeem Jeffries (D-N.Y.) on Wednesday blasted a new redistricting effort in his home state as one that “robs us of power and takes a sledgehammer to Black districts.”

In a campaign ad that he tweeted, Jeffries highlighted the state making history by electing the most Black candidates to Congress.

In a reference to New York’s first Black woman elected to Congress, Jeffries, the House Democratic Caucus chairman, said: “It’s enough to make Jim Crow blush. It’s time to fight like Shirley Chisholm.”

“The redistricting chaos in NY was unleashed by the Court of Appeals,” Jeffries said in a tweet alongside the advertisement by his campaign.

“Shirley Chisholm wouldn’t stand for an assault on historic Black neighborhoods like Bedford Stuyvesant. And neither will we,” he added, referring to the Brooklyn neighborhood.

The campaign ad is not the first time Jeffries has criticized New York’s redistricting plans. He said on Tuesday that the court “degraded” minority populations.

“In Brooklyn and Queens, you’ve got four districts with significant pluralities of either African Americans or Latinos. … In this proposed map, the Black or Latino population was degraded in all four districts. Are you kidding me? That doesn’t happen by accident,” Jeffries said.

The impending overhaul of New York’s congressional map has prompted much criticism from incumbent Democrats, because in some districts it could pit them against each other.

Rep. Joyce Beatty (D-Ohio), who leads the Congressional Black Caucus, on Wednesday downplayed the potential quarrel, emphasizing that the map has yet to be finalized.

“We’re not at Friday yet, so we don’t know what the districts are going to look like,” Beatty said.

Rep. Ritchie Torres, another New York Democrat, has taken a more direct approach in criticizing the plans, tweeting that “the thinly veiled racism here is profoundly disappointing.”

The New York map was unveiled by a judge on Monday and is expected to be released in its final form on Friday. 

Tags Hakeem Jeffries Joyce Beatty Ritchie Torres

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