GRAND RAPIDS, Mich. — Michigan’s redistricting commission approved a new congressional map Tuesday that will shake up the political landscape in West Michigan.
The new 13-district U.S. House map will be in place for the next decade, and in 2022, at least, it pits incumbents against each other.
The new MI-04 district will include both Zeeland and St. Joseph, the hometowns of GOP Reps. Bill Huizenga and Fred Upton respectively.
On Tuesday night, Huizenga announced he will run for re-election in the new 4th district saying in a tweet, "The Michigan Redistricting Commission has spoken. I was born and raised in Ottawa County and I will proudly run to represent the voters in the newly created 4th Congressional District. Can’t wait to get on the campaign trail and share my plan to protect life, cut spending, and create jobs."
In a statement released the following day, Upton said "Michigan's newly drawn 4th Congressional district includes a vast majority of area that I've proudly represented all my days, including my hometown. I know the people and the issues they care about and I've always delivered results for them back in Washington. The redistricting process is never pleasant particularly when colleagues are pitted against each other."
Adding, I've been strongly encouraged to seek another term in what will be considered yet again a swing district in a national polarized political climate. Now more than ever, we need to seek bipartisan consensus putting policy over politics. That is the winning formula that has led to our previous electoral victories and will again should we decide to run in 2022."
The new MI-02 district is wide ranging and includes parts of Barry, Kent and Ionia counties all the way up through Manistee. There are no incumbents currently living in the district, but GOP Rep. John Moolenaar (R–Midland) has announced he is running for reelection in it.
Moving to MI-03, which is centered around Grand Rapids and will keep the number three, but lose Battle Creek and Ionia and gain Muskegon and parts of the lakeshore.
The change brings more Democratic voters to a historically red district; the data shows the general election will likely be a toss-up.
Incumbent Congressman Peter Meijer (R–Grand Rapids) joined FOX 17 in the studio Tuesday to announce he’s running for reelection in the district.
“Grand Rapids is home. That’s where I was born, where I went to kindergarten, elementary, middle, high school; that’s where my wife and I live,” said Meijer.
“This district mirrors a lot of the prior district, in terms of having an emphasis on the Grand River watershed, the city of Grand rapids being the largest population center, but it does bring in some lakeshore communities as well, and these are a fantastic fit for a lot of the work we’ve been doing in congress, especially around conservation and clean water,” Meijer added.
As far as the maps go, they are finalized but that doesn’t mean this process is over. There could be litigation in the coming weeks. FOX 17 will keep you updated if that's the case.
READ MORE: Michigan lawmakers react to new US House, legislative maps