Illinois loses congressional seat, local lawmakers react

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PEORIA, Ill. (WMBD) — Illinois losing a congressional seat after losing population for the first time in 200 years.

Rep. Cheri Bustos (D-Ill.) reacted to the news with both disappointment and optimism.

“I’m disappointed Illinois will be losing representation in Washington, but remain committed to working alongside my colleagues on both sides of the aisle in Illinois congressional delegation to make our state a great place to live, work and raise a family,” she said in an email.

Rep. Rodney Davis (R-Ill.) put out a statement blaming Democratic policies for driving people away.

“It’s unfortunate, yet unsurprising, that Illinois lost population over the past decade. Democrats continue to push corruption, tax hikes, and job-killing policies, which have only made our immigration problems worse,” he said.

The Illinois General Assembly is responsible for redrawing the map. However, a local advocate for fair maps said both sides have abused the redistricting process in the past.

“Eventually, we need the leadership on both sides of the political aisle to step up and do the right thing by the citizens of the state of Illinois,” said Brad McMillan, board of directors co-chair for CHANGE Illinois, a “nonpartisan nonprofit that champions ethics and efficiency in government and elections in Illinois,” per its website.

According to the U.S. Census Bureau, some of the factors affecting data collection are a mobile population, declining response rates, and distrust in government.

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