Thursday, December 22, 2011

Chicago Ward Redrawing Part II - The Surprising Case of 19th Ward

A look a the ward remap in the 19th via strannik01: Chicago Ward Redrawing Part II - The Surprising Case of 19th Ward  H/T The Sixth Ward

Alderman Matt O'Shea, who represents the 19th Ward, announced his intention to keep the borders intact. The problem is, given the demographic realities, I am not sure how he intends to accomplish it. The article points out that, during the last redrawing, the residents were successful in keeping the ward intact. What the article doesn't mention is that, at the time, Chicago gained population. Given how much the population dropped, especially in the South Side, the status quo will be harder to justify. As I discussed in the previous post on the redrawing, the African-American Caucus is desperate to keep its numbers intact. They're going to try to grab as much territory as they can possibly get.

On the other hand, Ald. O'Shea is a loyal member of the Old Guard with considerable political experience.19th Ward community organizations have numbers and resources few community organizations in the adjacent wards can match. The sheer number of municipal and union employees in the ward is nothing to sneeze at, either. Even if the 19th Ward residents don't get their way, they will put up one hell of a fight.

Edited to Add: It is worth noting that Morgan Park lost population in all racial categories. White numbers dropped by 8.1 percent. Black numbers dropped by 7.75 percent. Even Hispanics, whose presence was negligible, lost 7.3 percent of the population.

Those population declines are striking.  The trends well established and it will have a big impact on Chicago.

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