Republican New York Rep. Claudia Tenney Moves Districts After State Legislature Releases New Map

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Michael Ginsberg Congressional Correspondent
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Republican New York Rep. Claudia Tenney announced Monday that she will move congressional districts in response to a map released by her state’s legislature that could give Democrats the opportunity to net three seats.

Tenney currently represents the 22nd District, which has a 16-point Republican lean. That seat would be eliminated under the new map, which is widely expected to pass the Democratic super-majority legislature. Fellow Republicans Nicole Malliotakis, John Katko, and Lee Zeldin would also see their districts eliminated under this proposal, although both Katko and Zeldin are not seeking reelection. The districts of Reps. Elise Stefanik, Andrew Garbarino and Tom Reed will become more Republican.

Reed, who represents the 23rd District, is retiring. Tenney will run to replace Reed in the 23rd.

Tenney defeated Democratic Rep. Anthony Brindisi in 2020 by only 109 votes and was sworn in a month later than the rest of her colleagues due to legal challenges. Under the new map, Tenney’s 22nd District will be split between Democrat Antonio Delgado’s 19th District, a bluer 22nd District, and a redder 23rd District, according to FiveThirtyEight. (RELATED: Pelosi Banned Congresswoman’s Military Officer Son From Attending Her Swearing-In)

“Throughout my career I have stood up for Upstate New York and the Southern Tier, fighting for our shared conservative values in Albany and Washington,” Tenney said in a statement. “Democrats are targeting me because they know I’ll continue to stand up to Nancy Pelosi, Joe Biden, and Kathy Hochul’s radical agenda.”

Republicans are expected to challenge the new map in state court if it is signed into law by Democratic Gov. Kathy Hochul. New York voters passed a constitutional amendment in 2014 prohibiting gerrymandering and creating a bipartisan citizens’ commission to draw new districts. After the commission deadlocked, the state legislature stepped in to draw the new districts.

Some Democrats have argued that the proposal introduced Sunday does not go far enough to create blue seats. The current Democratic proposal will most likely create a 22-4 House delegation, but the Democratic Congressional Campaign Committee called for a 23-3 gerrymander. However, more aggressive maps run the risk of a so-called “dummymander,” in which the party in power loses elections in districts it drew because it spread voters too thinly.