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Unusual boundaries will define redistricting in Georgia

Some neighborhoods divided on current map, set to be redrawn this later this year.

ATLANTA — A second week of legislative hearings is underway previewing Georgia's redistricting process. 

Residents living on the east side of the road live in the 6th, held by Democrat Lucy McBath. While, folks across the street, on the west side, are represented in congress by Democrat Hank Johnson.  

All those residents are part of a community called Oak Grove Acres.

Redistricting will decide which communities will stay put -- or switch -- in Georgia’s 13 congressional districts, and 236 legislative districts.  

The line along North Akin Road was among the lines drawn during the last redistricting process ten years ago. It may get re-drawn again later this year.

RELATED: 2021 redistricting will revive Georgia power struggle

The area has voted increasingly Democratic, as Republican former US Rep. Karen Handel found when she lost to McBath in 2018 and 2020.

"If you were going to gerrymander that district, you could do it with some precision. Because there’s a lot of data out there these days that tell you the leanings of all of those voters," said state Sen. Elena Parent, who also represents the area.  

Republicans controlling the redistricting process will study that data to redraw maps later this year.

Redistricting will likely affect every congressional district in Georgia.  The two biggest targets will be the 6th and 7th districts – newly occupied by Democrats McBath and Carolyn Bourdeaux.  

Like McBath, Bourdeaux could see some of her Democratic leaning precincts shuffled into Johnson’s  overwhelmingly-Democratic fourth district.

Republicans drawing new district lines face a significant challenge. Georgia has more Democratic voters now than it’s had in twenty years. 

Moving the lines may have a limited effect in preserving Republican majorities in congress and the state legislature.