Rep. Dina Titus on Nevada redistricting: 'I totally got f***ed by the legislature'

Rep. Dina Titus, D-Nev., speaks at an election night party, Tuesday, June 12, 2018, in Las Vegas. (AP Photo/John Locher)

Rep. Dina Titus is a Democrat who has held the seat in the state’s 1st congressional district since 2013. The 1st district is basically the city of Las Vegas while Nevada has three other congressional districts that cover the rest of the state. Currently only one of those districts, the 2nd, has a Republican representative.

However, last month Steve Sisolak, the Democratic governor of Nevada, signed into law a new redistricting map which completely changes the outline of the 1st congressional district. Five Thirty Eight describes the new map as an effort by Democrats to make two other districts more competitive for Dems.

On Nov. 16, the governor signed into law a new map — slightly amended from Democrats’ original proposal — that will “unpack” the solidly blue 1st District in an attempt to shore up Democratic prospects in two other seats, which they currently control but are competitive. The map features three seats that all favor Democrats by low single-digit margins and one seat that favors Republicans by double digits.

Nevada Current reports Rep. Titus is not at all happy about how things worked out:

In spirited remarks at an AFL-CIO town hall Wednesday, she told union members “I’m going to need your help on something terrible.”

“I totally got fucked by the Legislature on my district,” she said. “I’m sorry to say it like that, but I don’t know any other way to say it.”…

“You read that the Republicans are using gerrymandering to cut out Democratic seats, but they didn’t have to in this state,” she said. “We did it to ourselves.”

Titus said that the Democratic Congressional Campaign Committee “were stunned” by the decision.

According to Titus, Democrats could have left the northern part of the state (2nd district) to the GOP and then created two safe Democratic districts and one swing district in the remainder of the state. Instead they opted to divvy up Las Vegas into “three, competitive, risky districts.” But in the current environment, with President Biden struggling and Democrats with little in the way of legislative achievements, Rep. Titus predicted all three districts, “are very likely going down.”

Redistricting isn’t the only problem Democrats are facing. At the same meeting, Rep. Titus also expressed a lack of confidence that the BBB bill would be passed this year:

“(Senate Majority Leader Chuck) Schumer keeps saying they are going to pass it by Christmas,” she said. “That’s not too long away. I’m not sure if they’re going to be able to do that. And we don’t know what it’s going to have in it when it comes over.”

Stories like this are why I still believe Democrats are likely to salvage something out of the BBB bill. If they don’t, the conversations House Democrats have with constituents over the next year are all going to be about why they failed to get anything done. That’s just not a very good sales pitch to voters who already appear dissatisfied with the party. We’re already seeing signs that desperation to pass something (anything!) is setting in.