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Honda Announces Reelection Campaign

The congressman will run for reelection in 2012 for a district north of his current one that includes Milpitas, Fremont and Newark–as redistricting maps are expected to be finalized on August 15.

Editor's note: The original article posted on July 29 has been updated with Rep. Honda's 2012 reelection announcement from August 2. With his decision to move north, he will run in the district that includes Milpitas. Rep. Zoe Lofgren will run for reelection in her home district of San Jose.

Milpitas comes closer to sharing a congressperson with a new set of cities–Fremont and Newark–based on the final version of a proposed congressional map released Friday.

If redistricting lines are finalized on August 15, Milpitas voters will share a congressperson with Fremont, Newark, Cupertino, Santa Clara and Sunnyvale–instead of South Bay neighbors Campbell, Los Gatos and Gilroy–for the next decade.

Rep. Mike Honda announced his reelection on Tuesday, August 2, after the debt ceiling legislation was passed and on the desk of President Obama.

That clears the way for Rep. Zoe Lofgren to run in her home district of San Jose. According to KQED's Sacramento bureau chief John Myers, Honda and Lofgren were drawn into the same district.

According to Lofgren's campaign office, she will make an announcement about her reelection at her annual summer picnic in San Jose on August 6.

Under the new redistricting boundaries, the congressional district representing Milpitas, Alviso and Santa Clara, breaks away from its South Bay neighbors Campbell and Los Gatos–but joins with the northern portion of San Jose. It also crosses into Alameda County and includes all of Newark and a majority of Fremont.

Fremont and Newark are currently represented by . The district (13) would shift east, leaving all of Newark and a majority of Fremont behind to join with Milpitas.

Lofgren's current district (16) includes the central and eastern portions of San Jose. Honda's current district (15) includes Milpitas, Campbell and Cupertino, Los Gatos, Santa Clara and a section of San Jose.

Honda and Lofgren have both represented the South Bay for many terms and have consistently won their reelections. Most recently, they were both re-elected in 2010 and their seats are up for election in 2012.

(Click here to view the interactive maps.)

's district, would lose one of the Tri-Cities, . However, Milpitas, Newark and a majority of Fremont would stay intact.

"I am pleased that I will continue to represent all of Milpitas and that the city was not split during the redistricting process," he said.

"It is always better to keep a whole community intact whenever possible. Milpitas is a microcosm of California and I look forward to collaborating with its leaders on issues like job creation, education and transportation."

Wieckowski, a former Fremont vice mayor was elected in November 2010. Term limits for state assemblymembers are two years, with a limit of three terms.

State Senator Ellen Corbett’s  would continue to represent Milpitas, Newark, Union City, Hayward, Castro Valley, and a part of San Jose. Under the new boundaries, she would leave behind her hometown of San Leandro, Pleasanton and Sunol–and gain Santa Clara.

Corbett was elected to the Senate in 2006. She will be termed out in 2014.

In an email sent to Patch through her spokesperson, Corbett encouraged constituents with concerns about the new boundaries to communicate with the redistricting commission before it takes final action on August 15. 

"Whatever the final outcome of the new district lines, I look forward to serving my constituents in the 10th Senate District until the end of my term in 2014,” Corbett said.

The 14-member California Citizens Redistricting Commission released on Friday its latest maps with new districts for Congress, State Senate, State Assembly and the state Board of Equalization. 

The commission will take public input over the next two weeks. They are scheduled to approve the final version of the maps on Aug. 15.

"[Redistricting] ensures that the population change is considered in the new districts and that changes in the interests of the current and new residents can be taken into consideration," Commissioner Vince Barabba wrote in an email.

"Based on the experience of the commission in traveling throughout the state and from our other public input formats, I believe most residents will embrace the new districts."

According to the commission, a total of 2,700 members of the public spoke at 34 commission hearings around the state and they received close to 20,000 written comments.

Letting citizens redraw the political lines in California represents a large-scale national effort to eliminate gerrymandering.

The commission was spawned by a 2008 voter-approved ballot measure that stripped state legislators of the power to draw their own district boundaries. The commission's tasks were expanded to include the drawing of congressional districts last November.

Redistricting occurs every ten years using updated population data from the most recent U.S. Census. 

The commission says its goal is to create contiguous districts of relatively equal population that minimize city and county divisions, and group towns with similar "communities of interest."

Send a message to the commission at: wedrawthelines.ca.gov/contact.html.

Patch editors Adelaide Chen, Nika Megino, Zoneil Maharaj, Jill Replogle and Jennifer Courtney contributed to this report.

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