SOUTH BEND, Ind. — The St. Joseph County Board of Commissioners passed the new redistricting map proposed by the GOP with a 2-1 vote on Tuesday. The 3 member commission is composed of all Republicans. The only member to vote against the new maps was 2nd District Commissioner, Derek Dieter. Both Commissioner Andy Kostielney and Deb Fleming voted in favor of the new map.
The map, which essentially made the City of South Bend its own district, all but ensures a Democrat will always win the 2nd District. The result means Dieter will more than likely lose a re-election bid. To a lesser extent, the map tilted districts 1 and 3 in favor of the GOP.
Below are pictures of the old and new maps.
Commissioner Dieter attempted to table the vote on the new maps to a later date to get more input. His motion failed to get a second. He tried to motion another postponement, but was advised by the county attorney that he was not allowed to propose the same motion twice.
Over the past week or so, Dieter has teamed up with Democrats to stoke faux racial tension in what appeared to be an attempt to intimidate his fellow GOP commissioners to save his own seat. He helped put together a town hall style meeting on Monday night that was hosted by the League of Women Voters, of which every single board member has voted in Democrat primaries. At that meeting, activists, professors and Democrat operatives hurled erroneous racial allegations. Dieter then called out his fellow commissioners for not attending.
You can read an RNM opinion piece about Dieter’s actions here.
From here, the County Council will have to redraw county council districts based on the new commission map. Those districts will inevitably be more favorable to the GOP as well. All-in-all, the maps are a huge win for St. Joseph County Conservatives.
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