Virginia lawmakers name 8 members to redistricting commission

Two of the eight represent parts of Southwest Virginia

The eight Virginia legislators who will makeup half of the state's redistricting committee. (WSLS 10)

RICHMOND, Va. – Virginia lawmakers have picked legislators to serve on a new redistricting commission created with the aim of eliminating gerrymandering.

Leaders in both parties have announced their picks in recent days to serve on the commission. The 16-member panel, which was created after voters approved a constitutional amendment earlier this month, will include eight legislators and eight other citizens, evenly divided between Democrats and Republicans.

The selected lawmakers are Democratic Sens. George Barker (District 39) and Mamie Locke (District 2), GOP Sens. Ryan McDougle (District 4) and Steve Newman (District 23), House Democrats Dels. Delores McQuinn (70th District) and Marcus Simon (53rd District), and GOP Dels. Les Adams (16th District) and Margaret Ransone (99th District).

The districts covered by these eight contain either all or parts of 31 of Virginia’s 133 localities.

Newman’s district covers all of Botetourt and Craig counties, as well as parts of Campbell, Bedford and Roanoke counties and part of Lynchburg.

Adams’ district covers Martinsville, as well as parts of Henry and Pittsylvania counties.

The eight citizens will be chosen later by retired judges from a list prepared by legislators.

The maps developed by the panel will be sent to the General Assembly for an up-or-down vote with no opportunity to amend them. If the maps are rejected, the Supreme Court of Virginia will draw them.

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