California's congressional districts

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California's congressional districts since 2013

California is the most populous U.S. state; as a result, it has the most representation in the United States House of Representatives, with 53 Representatives. Each Representative represents one congressional district.

Per the 2020 United States census, California will lose a new congressional seat, reducing its total seats from 53 to 52.[1] This marked the first time in the state's history where it will lose a seat.[2] However due the state's redistricting process, the new congressional district boundaries will not officially take effect until the winners in the 2022 mid-term elections are inaugurated 2023.[3]

1992: Court ordered districts[edit]

The 1990 census gave California seven additional congressional seats. Attempts by the legislature to draw up new districts were unsuccessful, as three different plans drawn up by the Democratic-controlled Legislature were vetoed by Republican governor Pete Wilson. In September 1991 the California Supreme Court took jurisdiction over the redistricting process to break the stalemate.[4][5] Districts were drawn up by a panel of retired judges.

2002: Bipartisan redistricting[edit]

After the 2000 census, the California State Legislature was obliged to complete redistricting[6] for House of Representatives districts (in accordance with Article 1, Section 4 of the United States Constitution) as well as California State Assembly and California State Senate districts. It was mutually decided by legislators that the status quo in terms of balance of power would be preserved - a so-called Incumbent Protection Plan.[7] A bipartisan gerrymandering effort was done, and districts were configured in such a way that they were dominated by one or the other party, with few districts that could be considered competitive. In some cases this resulted in extremely convoluted boundary lines.

In the 2004 elections, a win by less than 55 percent of the vote was quite rare. This was seen in only five out of 80 State Assembly seats and two out of 20 State Senate seats up for election. The congressional seats were even less competitive than the state legislative districts - just three of the 53 districts were won with less than 60 percent of the vote in 2004.

2012: Citizens Redistricting Commission[edit]

Proposition 11, a California ballot proposition known as the Voters FIRST Act, was approved by the voters on November 4, 2008. It removed from the California Legislature the responsibility for drawing the state's congressional districts, and gave the responsibility instead to a 14-member Citizens Commission.[8] The U.S. Supreme Court upheld the constitutionality of removing the responsibility from the legislature. The proposition also required that the districts drawn up (1) comply with the federal Voting Rights Act; (2) make districts contiguous; (3) respect, to the extent possible, the integrity of cities, counties, neighborhoods and "communities of interest"; and (4) to the extent possible, make districts compact. Several of these terms are not defined in law.

Governor Arnold Schwarzenegger had earlier proposed placing the redistricting process in the hands of retired judges, which was on the November ballot as an initiative in a special election (called by the Governor on June 14, 2005), Proposition 77. The special election was held on November 8, 2005. However, the initiative was overwhelmingly defeated, with 59 percent voting no. All initiatives, including those proposed by the Governor's allies and several independent initiatives, failed that year.

The California Citizens Redistricting Commission certified final district maps on August 15, 2011, and they took effect with the 2012 election.[9] The new districts are described as more "purple" than "red" or "blue" - that is, more mixed in electoral composition compared to the mostly "safe" districts of the previous decade, where incumbents were almost guaranteed re-election. These new districts, combined with demographic trends over several decades that favored the Democratic party, resulted in a gain of four House of Representatives seats for California Democrats in the 2012 elections.

2020: Citizens Redistricting Commission[edit]

Selection process[edit]

The 14-member Commission for 2020 is made up of five Republicans, five Democrats, and four members who are not affiliated with either party. Initial and supplemental applications were forwarded to a review panel consisting of three independent auditors from the CA State Auditor. This panel selected 120 of the "most qualified applicants", who were then personally interviewed and divided into three equal sub-pools according to party affiliation, and then narrowed down to 60 applicants.[10]

The review panel presented those 60 applicants to the California State Legislature, where leadership had the option of removing up to 24 names from the list, eight from each sub-pool. The names of the remaining applicants were submitted to the California State Auditor, who randomly drew three Democrats, three Republicans, and two from neither of those parties. These eight individuals became the first eight members of the commission, and they selected the remaining six members by selecting two commissioners from each of the three sub-pools.[10]

Redistricting process[edit]

The commission received the official 2020 U.S. Census data on which the maps must be based, by law, on September 21, 2021. Draft maps were released then on November 21, and final maps were submitted to the California Secretary of State on December 27, 2021.[11]

The new districts are considered "enacted" as of December 27, 2021. However, there was a 90-day period for a referendum petition to be filed to prevent the maps from becoming effective. This referendum period ended on March 27, 2022, when the filing and campaign season for the 2022 primary election was already underway. Even after becoming effective, the newly redrawn districts will not become official until the 2022 primary and general elections, and the new districts will not actually exist until after the 2022 general election is complete.[3] Until the 2023 inaugurations, the existing boundaries and elected representatives remain as shown below.

Current (until 2023 inauguration) districts and representatives[edit]

List of members of the California United States House delegation, their terms in office, district boundaries, and their political ratings according to the CPVI. The delegation for the 117th Congress has a total of 53 members, with 42 Democrats (including Speaker of the House Nancy Pelosi) and 10 Republicans (including minority leader Kevin McCarthy). One seat, the 22nd, has been vacant since January 3, 2022, after the resignation of Devin Nunes.

Current U.S. representatives from California
District Member
Party Incumbent since CPVI
District map
1st Doug LaMalfa 116th Congress.jpg
Doug LaMalfa
Republican January 3, 2013 R+11 California US Congressional District 1 (since 2013).tif
2nd Jared Huffman 116th Congress.jpg
Jared Huffman
(San Rafael)
Democratic January 3, 2013 D+23 California US Congressional District 2 (since 2013).tif
3rd John Garamendi official photo.jpg
John Garamendi
(Walnut Grove)
Democratic January 3, 2009 D+5 California US Congressional District 3 (since 2013).tif
4th Tom McClintock, Official Portrait.JPG
Tom McClintock
(Elk Grove)
Republican January 3, 2009 R+8 California US Congressional District 4 (since 2013).tif
5th Mike Thompson, official portrait, 116th Congress.jpg
Mike Thompson
(St. Helena)
Democratic February 3, 1999 D+22 California US Congressional District 5 (since 2013).tif
6th Doris Matsui Official Photo.JPG
Doris Matsui
Democratic March 10, 2005 D+21 California US Congressional District 6 (since 2013).tif
7th Ami Bera official portrait (cropped).jpg
Ami Bera
(Elk Grove)
Democratic January 3, 2013 D+5 California US Congressional District 7 (since 2013).tif
8th Jay Obernolte 117th U.S Congress.jpg
Jay Obernolte
(Big Bear Lake)
Republican January 3, 2021 R+8 California US Congressional District 8 (since 2013).tif
9th Jerry McNerney (2014).jpg
Jerry McNerney
Democratic January 3, 2007 D+8 California US Congressional District 9 (since 2013).tif
10th Josh Harder, official portrait, 116th Congress.jpg
Josh Harder
Democratic January 3, 2019 EVEN California US Congressional District 10 (since 2013).tif
11th Mark DeSaulnier-1.jpeg
Mark DeSaulnier
Democratic January 3, 2015 D+24 California US Congressional District 11 (since 2013).tif
12th Official photo of Speaker Nancy Pelosi in 2019.jpg
Nancy Pelosi
(San Francisco)
Democratic June 2, 1987 D+38 California US Congressional District 12 (since 2013).tif
13th U.S. Rep. Barbara Lee - Official Portrait, 115th Congress.jpg
Barbara Lee
Democratic April 21, 1998 D+40 California US Congressional District 13 (since 2013).tif
14th Jackie Speier official photo (cropped).jpg
Jackie Speier
Democratic April 8, 2008 D+28 California US Congressional District 14 (since 2013).tif
15th Eric Swalwell 114th official photo (cropped).jpg
Eric Swalwell
Democratic January 3, 2013 D+22 California US Congressional District 15 (since 2013).tif
16th Jim Costa official portrait (cropped).jpg
Jim Costa
Democratic January 3, 2005 D+9 California US Congressional District 16 (since 2013).tif
17th Ro Khanna, official portrait, 115th Congress.jpg
Ro Khanna
Democratic January 3, 2017 D+24 California US Congressional District 17 (since 2013).tif
18th Anna Eshoo official photo.jpg
Anna Eshoo
Democratic January 3, 1993 D+27 California US Congressional District 18 (since 2013).tif
19th Zoe Lofgren photo.jpg
Zoe Lofgren
(San Jose)
Democratic January 3, 1995 D+23 California US Congressional District 19 (since 2013).tif
20th Jimmy Panetta official portrait.jpg
Jimmy Panetta
(Carmel Valley)
Democratic January 3, 2017 D+23 California US Congressional District 20 (since 2013).tif
21st David Valadao 117th U.S Congress.jpg
David Valadao
Republican January 3, 2021 D+5 California US Congressional District 21 (since 2013).tif
22nd No image.svg
None January 3, 2022 R+6 California US Congressional District 22 (since 2013).tif
23rd Kevin McCarthy, official photo, 116th Congress.jpg
Kevin McCarthy
Republican January 3, 2007 R+12 California US Congressional District 23 (since 2013).tif
24th Salud Carbajal - 117th Congress.jpg
Salud Carbajal
(Santa Barbara)
Democratic January 3, 2017 D+10 California US Congressional District 24 (since 2013).tif
25th Mike Garcia, official portrait, 116th Congress (cropped1).jpg
Mike Garcia
(Santa Clarita)
Republican May 19, 2020 D+3 California US Congressional District 25 (since 2013).tif
26th Julia Brownley official photo.jpg
Julia Brownley
(Westlake Village)
Democratic January 3, 2013 D+10 California US Congressional District 26 (since 2013).tif
27th Judy Chu 2019-05-02.jpg
Judy Chu
(Monterey Park)
Democratic July 14, 2009 D+18 California US Congressional District 27 (since 2013).tif
28th Adam Schiff official portrait (cropped).jpg
Adam Schiff
Democratic January 3, 2001 D+23 California US Congressional District 28 (since 2013).tif
29th Tony Cárdenas 114th Congress (cropped).jpg
Tony Cárdenas
Democratic January 3, 2013 D+27 California US Congressional District 29 (since 2013).tif
30th Brad Sherman 116th Congress.jpg
Brad Sherman
(Sherman Oaks)
Democratic January 3, 1997 D+20 California US Congressional District 30 (since 2013).tif
31st Pete Aguilar Official Portrait, 115th Congress.jpg
Pete Aguilar
Democratic January 3, 2015 D+9 California US Congressional District 31 (since 2013).tif
32nd Rep-Napolitano.jpg
Grace Napolitano
Democratic January 3, 1999 D+17 California US Congressional District 32 (since 2013).tif
33rd Congressman Ted W. Lieu Official Photo.jpg
Ted Lieu
Democratic January 3, 2015 D+19 California US Congressional District 33 (since 2013).tif
34th Jimmy Gomez official portrait (cropped).jpg
Jimmy Gomez
(Los Angeles)
Democratic July 11, 2017 D+34 California US Congressional District 34 (since 2013).tif
35th Norma Torres 115th official photo.jpg
Norma Torres
Democratic January 3, 2015 D+17 California US Congressional District 35 (since 2013).tif
36th Raul Ruiz, official portrait, 113th congress.jpg
Raul Ruiz
Democratic January 3, 2013 D+4 California US Congressional District 36 (since 2013).tif
37th Karen-Bass-2012.jpg
Karen Bass
(Los Angeles)
Democratic January 3, 2011 D+36 California US Congressional District 37 (since 2013).tif
38th Linda Sánchez, 116th Congress, official photo.jpg
Linda Sánchez
Democratic January 3, 2003 D+17 California US Congressional District 38 (since 2013).tif
39th Young Kim 117th U.S Congress.jpg
Young Kim
(La Habra)
Republican January 3, 2021 D+3 California US Congressional District 39 (since 2013).tif
40th Lucille Roybal-Allard official photo.jpg
Lucille Roybal-Allard
Democratic January 3, 1993 D+31 California US Congressional District 40 (since 2013).tif
41st Mark Takano 113th Congress official photo.jpg
Mark Takano
Democratic January 3, 2013 D+12 California US Congressional District 41 (since 2013).tif
42nd Ken Calvert official photo.jpg
Ken Calvert
Republican January 3, 1993 R+7 California US Congressional District 42 (since 2013).tif
43rd Congresswoman Waters official photo.jpg
Maxine Waters
(Los Angeles)
Democratic January 3, 1991 D+29 California US Congressional District 43 (since 2013).tif
44th Nanette Barragan official portrait.jpg
Nanette Barragán
(San Pedro)
Democratic January 3, 2017 D+32 California US Congressional District 44 (since 2013).tif
45th Katie Porter, official portrait, 116th Congress.jpg
Katie Porter
Democratic January 3, 2019 D+3 California US Congressional District 45 (since 2013).tif
46th Lou Correa official portrait.jpg
Lou Correa
(Santa Ana)
Democratic January 3, 2017 D+16 California US Congressional District 46 (since 2013).tif
47th Alan Lowenthal 113th Congress Portrait.jpeg
Alan Lowenthal
(Long Beach)
Democratic January 3, 2013 D+14 California US Congressional District 47 (since 2013).tif
48th MichelleSteel.jpg
Michelle Steel
(Surfside[failed verification])
Republican January 3, 2021 R+1 California US Congressional District 48 (since 2013).tif
49th Mike Levin.jpg
Mike Levin
(San Juan Capistrano)
Democratic January 3, 2019 D+4 California US Congressional District 49 (since 2013).tif
50th Darrell Issa 117th Congress.jpg
Darrell Issa
Republican January 3, 2021 R+8 California US Congressional District 50 (since 2013).tif
51st Juan Vargas official photo.jpg
Juan Vargas
(San Diego)
Democratic January 3, 2013 D+20 California US Congressional District 51 (since 2013).tif
52nd Scott Peters official portrait 116th Congress.jpg
Scott Peters
(San Diego)
Democratic January 3, 2013 D+12 California US Congressional District 52 (since 2013).tif
53rd Representative Sara Jacobs full portrait.jpg
Sara Jacobs
(San Diego)
Democratic January 3, 2021 D+17 California US Congressional District 53 (since 2013).tif

Historical district boundaries[edit]

See also[edit]


  1. ^ Merica, Dan; Stark, Liz (April 26, 2021). "Census Bureau announces 331 million people in US, Texas will add two congressional seats". CNN. Retrieved April 26, 2021.
  2. ^ Mason, Melanie; Mehta, Seema (April 26, 2021). "California to lose a congressional seat, according to new census data". The Los Angeles Times. Retrieved April 26, 2021.
  3. ^ a b "What New Districts Mean".
  4. ^ "Supreme Court takes over remapping job". Sacramento Bee. September 26, 1991. Retrieved September 3, 2011.
  5. ^ "Court Remap Plan Could Cut Democrats' Clout in California". Washington Post. December 4, 1991. Retrieved September 3, 2011.
  6. ^ The word "gerrymandering" is replaced with redistricting as the word "gerrymandering" refers, by definition, to the redrawing of districts to the advantage of a single party or for partisan gain
  7. ^ "Latinos May Gain Few Seats in Redistricting; Politics: Their push for more representation in Congress clashes with Democrats' desire to protect incumbents as district boundaries are redrawn". Los Angeles Times. August 26, 2001. Retrieved September 5, 2011.
  8. ^ "Citizens Commission website: background". Archived from the original on September 2, 2011. Retrieved September 3, 2011.
  9. ^ "California Citizens Redistricting Commission | "Fair Representation - Democracy at Work!"".
  10. ^ a b "About Us".
  11. ^ "Press Releases".
  12. ^ "Office of the Clerk, U.S. House of Representatives". Retrieved January 14, 2022.
  13. ^ "Introducing the 2021 Cook Political Report Partisan Voter Index". Cook Political Report. Retrieved January 14, 2022.