ATLANTA - Georgia state lawmakers adjourned the 2021 special session Monday after members of the House of Representatives gave final approval to a bill redrawing the state's 14 congressional districts.
"I know that there are people in different places around the state that would've preferred this or that, but I think for--looking at the whole, I think it's a really good map," House Speaker David Ralston, R-Blue Ridge, said afterward.
Democrats, however, decried the redistricting process and the resulting map.
"In my opinion, this map puts power over principles, partisanship over people. Georgia deserves our best efforts and Senate Bill 2EX is not it," said House Minority Leader James Beverly, D-Macon.
Since the release of the congressional map last week, the updated districts in the northern metro Atlanta area drew the most criticism.
The majority-Black community of Austell was drawn into CD 14, which is represented by Republican Congresswoman Marjorie Taylor Greene.
CD 7, which was competitive when Carolyn Bourdeaux ran for the seat in 2018 and 2020, became a more compact Democratic district.
Meanwhile, the map all but assures Congresswoman Lucy McBath, D-Georgia, will not be able to win re-election in CD 7. The district now stretches from Sandy Springs into the heavily-Republican counties of Forsyth, Dawson and Cherokee.
"The 6th congressional district was the most competitive in this state and the map offered by the Democratic Caucus would have kept it that way," said state Rep. Matthew Wilson, D-Brookhaven. "But this map makes your intent obvious--to legislatively draw and quarter Congresswoman Lucy McBath and scatter to the four winds all the black and brown voters that put her in office."
Shortly after the vote, Rep. McBath announced she would instead run to represent the 7th district.
"Brian Kemp, the Republican Party, and the NRA will not have the final say on when my work in Congress [...] is done," Rep. McBath said in a statement posted to Twitter. "So I am running in the newly created Democratic district."
That will set up a tough primary battle between McBath and Bourdeaux.
"I am the Gwinnett representative in the race for a predominantly Gwinnett district," Rep. Bourdeaux said in a statement. "The people of the 7th deserve a representative that understands and cares about their needs and has a record of fighting for them in Washington. It’s my hard-fought honor to serve the people of Gwinnett and GA’s 7th district, and I look forward to continuing to do so."
State Rep. Donna McLeod, D-Lawrenceville, also announced she will run for the seat in 2022.
Gov. Brian Kemp still has to sign the bill drawing the congressional districts, as well as the bills for the state House and Senate. There is no word on when he plans to do that, but legal challenges are likely to follow.