Redistricting and East Mississippi

The three judges hosted a status conference on the issue Friday in Jackson. During that, attorneys for all parties involved informed the panel about what they want to see happen.

According to lawmakers, the proposals being reviewed could lead to big changes for east Mississippi.

Unlike the current lines, which have some districts very spread out and divided, Representative Greg Snowden says the two House proposals that are being reviewed by federal judges have many districts, including his own, more compact.

Snowden said the proposed changes could pit Lauderdale County supervisor Craig Hitt, who qualified to run for the open seat in District 84, to have to run against an incumbent after all.

"Under the proposals, he and I would be in the same district in some of those plans, and in other plans he would be in a district that would go over into Newton County," Snowden said.

Arguably, the biggest change that is being proposed involves District 84. Both proposals from the House would literally move that district from the western side of Lauderdale County and Clarke County to the eastern side of Lauderdale County, where it would eliminate Clarke County and pick up portions of Kemper and Neshoba.

Shifting District 84 to the eastern side of Lauderdale County would create a second majority minority district within the county.

The first is District 82. It's a seat that was occupied for almost three decades by Charles Young, Sr. Under the proposals that are being reviewed by the judges, his son, Charles Young, Jr., would be left to seek the legislative seat within the newly established majority-minority district.

Meanwhile, with the judges' order on the redistricting dilemma yet to be rendered, legislative candidates like Snowden must now wait.

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