State of Illinois loses a Congressional seat

Updated: Apr. 29, 2021 at 5:00 PM CDT
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CARBONDALE, Ill. (KFVS) - The State of Illinois lost nearly 80,000 residents.

That’s a seventh straight year of decline, and with that decline in population comes the lost of a Congressional seat as well.

Illinois is one of seven states to have lost a Congressional seat. Others included Michigan, Ohio and Pennsylvania.

“So, we are sort of sort of a national kind of rust spell struggle,” said John Shaw, director of the SIU Paul Simon Public Policy Institute.

Illinois’ Congressional delegation is now at its smallest.

“Illinois’s congressional delegation is going to be the smallest it’s ever been. In 1930, we had 27 seats in the house, after this census we will have 17,” said Shaw.

Losing a seat may not be the worst thing that will happen.

“Also, let’s not forget the electoral college. We will be have one less vote in the electoral college, which determines a president,” said Shaw.

Illinois now has 13 Democratic seats and five Republican.

Shaw said he believes redrawing the districts may create some chaos.

“A real scramble is going to unfold as to how to redraw the 17 districts to reflect this loss of a seat,” he said.

Federal law requires that each district have a population of around 760,000 residents.

“So, they’re looking to draw districts in a way that would probably effectively combine two republican districts,” said Shaw. “I think lawmakers here are going to have physically larger districts. I mean, it’s going to be more miles to go visit constituents then they ever had had before.”

According to the Census Bureau, Illinois, Mississippi and West Virginia have all lost population over the last decade.

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