Commission approves new Missouri state Senate districts

Monday, March 12, 2012 | 3:19 p.m. CDT; updated 5:10 p.m. CDT, Monday, March 12, 2012

JEFFERSON CITY — A bipartisan commission has agreed to new boundaries for Missouri's 34 state Senate districts after making some adjustments to an earlier proposal to smooth population differences.

Commissioners approved the plan with a 10-0 vote on Monday. Chairman Doug Harpool said the changes are designed to distribute population more evenly and aren't likely to affect the districts' political characteristics.

This is the second attempt to draw new Senate districts based on the 2010 census. A different bipartisan panel deadlocked on a map last year, handing the task to a special panel of appellate judges. The Missouri Supreme Court in January rejected the panel's map.

The tentative redistricting plan had been criticized by some St. Louis Republicans and was challenged in a federal lawsuit.

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