Alabama's 7th congressional district

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Coordinates: 32°33′5.2″N 87°52′17.04″W / 32.551444°N 87.8714000°W / 32.551444; -87.8714000

Alabama's 7th congressional district
Alabama's congressional districts, the 7th at center left
Alabama's congressional districts, the 7th at center left
Current Representative Terri Sewell (DBirmingham)
Area 8,780 mi²
Distribution 72.2% urban, 27.8% rural
Population (2000) 635,300
Median income $26,672
Ethnicity 35.5% White, 61.7% Black, 0.6% Asian, 1.3% Hispanic, 0.2% Native American, 0.7% other
Occupation 28.6% blue collar, 53.4% white collar, 18% gray collar
Cook PVI D+20[1]

Alabama's 7th congressional district is a United States congressional district in Alabama that elects a representative to the United States House of Representatives. The district encompasses Choctaw, Dallas, Greene, Hale, Lowndes, Marengo, Pickens, Perry, Sumter and Wilcox counties, and portions of Clarke, Jefferson, Montgomery and Tuscaloosa counties. The district encompasses portions of the Birmingham, Montgomery and Tuscaloosa/Northport urban areas. The largest city entirely within the district is Selma.

The district has been majority-minority since the redistricing following the 1990 census. It is currently represented by Democrat Terri Sewell, who succeeded Artur Davis in 2010.

The district from 2003 to 2013

Character[edit]

Alabama's 7th Congressional District was first created in 1843 and has existed since then with the exception of the years 1867-1873. The area this district has represented in the state has changed over time, depending upon the number of U.S. Representatives apportioned to Alabama. Around the turn of the 20th Century, the district included the city of Gadsden. Over time, this shifted to cover the area around Tuscaloosa. The last two representative for the district before its reconfiguration into majority-minority — Richard Shelby (now Alabama's senior senator) and Claude Harris — were Tuscaloosa residents.

The current shape of the district was largely formed in 1992 when it was reconstituted as a majority-minority district under provisions of the Voting Rights Act of 1965 as amended in 1982 to include greater representation for minorities in Congress.[2] Half of the western Alabama portion of the district was moved to the 4th district, and a large portion of Tuscaloosa County was moved into the 6th district, which had primarily been based around Birmingham. To counter the loss in population and to create the minority majority, many counties from the Black Belt region, a rural expanse in Alabama and former home to the state's once-flourishing cotton plantations, were added to the district, as was as an arm extending from Tuscaloosa roughly along the Interstate Highway 20/59 corridor into Jefferson County all the way to inner city Birmingham. This resulted in two districts that were centered around Birmingham in terms of population (the 6th and the 7th), effectively disenfranchising Tuscaloosa from congressional representation. The three representatives elected from the district following reconfiguration — Earl F. Hilliard, Artur Davis and Terri Sewell — have been from Birmingham.

Mostly minor changes in the following two redistrictings have left the district in fairly the same shape, with the major exception being the addition of western portions of Montgomery County, including large swaths of inner-city Montgomery in the redistricting following the 2010 census. Presently, the district contains heavily urban areas in Birmingham, Montgomery and Tuscaloosa and ten of the fourteen counties in the Black Belt. Three of the state's largest colleges are located in the district: Alabama State University in Montgomery, the University of Alabama in Tuscaloosa and the University of Alabama at Birmingham.

Voting[edit]

Due to the minority representation in this district, a majority of the voters identify with the Democratic Party.

Election results from statewide races
Year Office Results
2012 President Obama 72 - 27%
2008 President Obama 72 - 27%
2004 President Kerry 64 - 35%
2000 President Gore 66 - 33%

List of representatives[edit]

A graphical representation of party control of Alabama's 7th Congressional District

Congress Representative Party Years Notes
District created March 4, 1843
28th-29th No image.svg Felix G. McConnell Democratic March 4, 1843 - September 10, 1846 Died
29th-31st No image.svg Franklin W. Bowdon December 7, 1846 - March 3, 1851
32nd No image.svg Alexander White Whig March 4, 1851 - March 3, 1853
33rd James Ferguson Dowdell.jpg James F. Dowdell Democratic March 4, 1853 - March 3, 1855 Redistricted to the 3rd district
34th No image.svg Sampson W. Harris March 4, 1855 - March 3, 1857 Redistricted from the 3rd district
35th-36th Jabez Lamar Monroe Curry.jpg Jabez L. M. Curry March 4, 1857 - January 21, 1861 Withdrew
37th-39th (1861–1863) Civil War
District eliminated in 1863
District re-established in 1877
44th-52nd William H. Forney.jpg William H. Forney Democratic March 4, 1877 - March 4, 1893 Redistricted from the At-large district
53rd No image.svg William H. Denson March 4, 1893 - March 3, 1895
54th-55th No image.svg Milford W. Howard Populist March 4, 1895 - March 3, 1899
56th-66th No image.svg John L. Burnett Democratic March 4, 1899 - May 13, 1919 Died
66th-67th No image.svg Lilius Bratton Rainey September 30, 1919 - March 3, 1923
68th-72nd No image.svg Miles C. Allgood March 4, 1923 - March 3, 1933 Redistricted to the 5th district
73rd-76th William Brockman Bankhead (Young).jpg William B. Bankhead March 4, 1933 - September 15, 1940 Redistricted from the 10th district, Speaker of the U.S. House of Representatives from 1936–1940, Died
76th No image.svg Zadoc L. Weatherford November 5, 1940 - January 3, 1941
77th No image.svg Walter W. Bankhead January 3, 1941 - February 1, 1941 Resigned
77th-80th No image.svg Carter Manasco June 24, 1941 - January 3, 1949
81st-87th Carl Elliott.jpg Carl Elliott January 3, 1949 - January 3, 1963 Redistricted to the At-large district
88th January 3, 1963 - January 3, 1965 District inactive, all representatives elected At-large on a general ticket
89th James D. Martin.jpg James D. Martin Republican January 3, 1965 - January 3, 1967
90th-92nd Tombevill.jpg Tom Bevill Democratic January 3, 1967 - January 3, 1973 Redistricted to the 4th district
93rd-95th Walter Flowers.jpg Walter Flowers January 3, 1973 - January 3, 1979 Redistricted from the 5th district
96th-99th Richard Shelby, official portrait, 112th Congress.jpg Richard C. Shelby January 3, 1979 - January 3, 1987
100th-102nd No image.svg Claude Harris, Jr. January 3, 1987 - January 3, 1993
103rd-107th Earl Hilliard.jpg Earl F. Hilliard January 3, 1993 - January 3, 2003
108th-111th Artur Davis.jpg Artur Davis January 3, 2003–January 3, 2011
112th-113th Terri Sewell, Official Portrait, 112th Congress.jpg Terri Sewell January 3, 2011–Present

References[edit]

  1. ^ "Partisan Voting Index Districts of the 113th Congress: 2004 & 2008". The Cook Political Report. 2012. Retrieved 2013-01-10. 
  2. ^ Pear, Robert (August 3, 1992). "THE 1992 CAMPAIGN: Congressional Districts; Redistricting Expected to Bring Surge in Minority Lawmakers". The New York Times. Retrieved April 23, 2010.