State lawmakers Tuesday approved the outline of a new 7th Congressional District for South Carolina that is anchored in Horry County and includes the Pee Dee region.
Competing plans had pitted Horry against Beaufort County as the anchor for the new district, created because of the state’s population growth over the last decade.
However, renegade Republican state senators who had pushed a Beaufort-centered district surrendered Tuesday, endorsing the Horry district in a move they hope will keep federal judges from drawing the new district.
Gov. Nikki Haley will sign off on the new district, her spokesman said Tuesday. However, because of South Carolina’s history of racial discrimination, the new lines for all of the state’s congressional and legislative districts also must be approved by the U.S. Justice Department.
Lawmakers are required to redraw the state’s political districts every decade using new census data. Where to locate the state’s new congressional district had fueled a legislative fire that burned for months as lawmakers offered up various plans to give their parts of the state more political power.