Georgia Republican brushes aside Dems' redistricting worries

Georgia Rep. Jack Kingston (R) said it was "premature" for state Democrats to complain about the redistricting process and warned the GOP could be more heavy handed when redrawing the boundaries.

Georgia Democratic lawmakers have cried foul over the state Republicans shifting responsibility for the details of redistricting from the University of Georgia's Carl Vinson Institute of Government, which is nonpartisan, to a Legislative and Congressional Reapportionment Office that will be advised by a top Republican lawyer.

Georgia has gained a congressional district as a result of population growth, which will complicate the process.

But Kingston said there was no plan to dramatically tilt the boundaries in his party's favor and noted that Democrats didn't use a soft touch when Gov. Roy Barnes (D) was in power after the last Census in 2000. 

"You might tilt your side here or there to protect an incumbent or two, but I think the Democrats are being a bit premature," he told The Ballot Box. "And I'm just wondering where they were when Roy Barnes was making ink splatters all over the state?

"We had an opportunity to act like Roy Barnes and the Democrats did, but we have not taken that," the congressman added. "We resisted that. We've showed that you could actually do it tempered and be fair."

Kingston labeled the Democrats' complaints sour grapes after years of coming up short on Election Day.

"If they got a gripe that thing's being too partisan in the state of Georgia, it's called the general electorate," he said. "We've gone from being a Democrat state to a Republican state and they know that and can't stand it." 

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