State Senate GOP majority wants to merge four Queens districts currently held by Dems into two

The New York Daily News article discusses the state Senate Republican's proposal for new districting lines that combines four Queens districts into two. Senator Gianaris believes that the Senate Republican's ploy further demonstrates why the redistricing process needs improvement.

The state Senate GOP majority wants to merge four Queens districts currently held by Democrats into two — and one is held by the chair of the Democratic Senate Campaign Committee.

Michael Gianaris, whose position makes him a main architect of Democratic campaign strategy in the Senate, would face a reelection dogfight against a Latino incumbent, Jose Peralta, in a heavily Latino district, sources said.

The other tough-luck draw for Democrats would pit longtime Sen. Toby Ann Stavisky against freshman Tony Avella, the sources added.

Stavisky and Avella would have to battle over a single district because, as the Daily News reported in Wednesday’s editions, the Senate GOP — which now holds a razor-thin majority — would create an Asian-majority district in Flushing that would not have an incumbent.

While both houses of the Legislature are expected to release their once-a-decade redistricting plans Thursday, the Senate maps promise to garner the most attention due to their slim majority of one seat, with another currently vacant.

Gov. Cuomo has vowed to veto any plans rooted in partisanship.

When told by the Daily News that the GOP’s proposal would directly affect him, Gianaris said he was “thoroughly unsurprised by the Senate Republicans’ pettiness.”

“By the minute, they continue to make the case better than I can as to why the redistricting process needs to be fairer and independent,” he added.

Read the full article here.