RICHMOND, Thursday, April 28 — The Virginia State Senate passed an updated version of its redistricting plan today with a 32-5 bipartisan vote. The General Assembly redistricting bill previously passed the Senate in a party-line vote, but was vetoed on April 15 by Gov. Bob McDonnell. The governor said in a letter that he had concerns about the Senate map. Since then, Senate Democrats and Republicans have worked together to make modifications to the bill. The new map continues to preserves the Senate’s current 22 Democratic seats, but substantive changes were made to Republican districts including establishing two Senate districts in Virginia Beach.
“Each side wanted more than they got, but we were able to reach an agreement and produce a map that meets state and federal requirements including special attention to the requirements of the Voting Rights Act,” said Senate Majority Leader Richard Saslaw. Members of the Senate Privileges and Elections Committee voted 12-3 in favor of amendments to the redistricting bill, HB5005, during a mid-afternoon meeting. The City of Falls Church will be represented by Sen. Saslaw under the new plan.