Reps. Rodney Davis (R-Ill.), Cheri Bustos (D-Ill.) and Lauren Underwood (D-Ill.)
Democrats will again have total control over the crafting of Illinois’s congressional map — and, if possible, they’ll want to take out GOP Rep. Rodney Davis. In 2011, mapmakers had to protect then-Democratic Rep. Jerry Costello, who held a seat to the south of Davis that has since moved away from the party. If Democrats give some of East St. Louis to Davis, he could be in much more competitive territory.
But Democrats will have to be careful: Illinois is on track to drop a district, and Reps. Cheri Bustos and Lauren Underwood, who just barely survived their own 2020 reelections, could struggle to find enough Democratic-friendly voters in northern Illinois to secure them both.
Rep.-elect Michelle Fischbach (R-Minn.) and Rep. Angie Craig (D-Minn.)
It’s unclear whether Minnesota will lose one of its eight seats in the next census. But because Democrats failed to reclaim the GOP-held state Senate on Election Day, it’s highly likely the courts play a role, adding an extra layer of unpredictability.
If Minnesota loses a seat, Republican Rep.-elect Michelle Fischbach’s western district could be divided between the surrounding three seats held by Republican Reps. Jim Hagedorn, Pete Stauber and Tom Emmer. Then Democratic Reps. Dean Phillips and Angie Craig will have to avoid taking in too many more unfriendly voters outside the Twin Cities suburbs. Craig is probably in a tougher spot because her seat is already more rural and Republican-leaning than Phillips’.
Rep. Lucy McBath (D-Ga.) and Rep.-elect Carolyn Bourdeaux (D-Ga.)
Georgia’s delegation is likely holding at 14 districts. But Republicans, who have total control over the process, will want to address the ticking time bomb north of Atlanta. Rapid diversification and Trump-era devastation in the suburbs deprived Republicans of two House seats that were once GOP bastions, and it’s safe to bank on them trying to get back at least one of the districts.
There are several ways to achieve this. Creating a safe Democratic seat on Rep.-elect Carolyn Bourdeaux’s turf, in quickly growing Gwinnett County, would leave Rep. Lucy McBath without a natural base, potentially sidelining a popular Democrat with a compelling story. But McBath could still run for that seat — and there may not be a way to keep any district in the area red for a whole decade, as Republicans discovered during the Trump administration, because demographics and voting trends there are moving so speedily toward Democrats.