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      Rep. Fullerton talks redistricting with voters

      Redistricting and reapportionment is one of those topics that can be really confusing.

      But in politics there are few things that are more important.

      Virtually everybody is affected by this. It gives you a representative who hopefully is representing you, said State Representative Carol Fullerton.

      That's why City Commissioner Jon Howard invited voters to get educated on redistricting from Rep. Fullerton.

      Today's meeting was basically an eye-opener to look at what is redistricting, what is reapportionment, said Howard.

      The state maps have already been drawn. They still have to get justice department approval. But because of drops in population, it looks like Southwest Georgia will lose representation.

      We will be losing 3 or 4 senators in South Georgia and we'll be losing between 5 to 7 representatives, said Fullerton.

      When funds from the state and federal government is going to be allocated, Southwest Georgia is probably going to be on the short end of the stick of getting federal and state funds, said Howard.

      The new maps were drawn up by republicans who have a majority. Those maps were passed, but Fullerton who is a democrat, voted against them. She thinks republicans deliberately tried make the state more conservative.

      They put a white democrat and a black democrat together in about 7 or 8 districts in Atlanta in a majority black district. The idea is to get rid of the white democrats, said Fullerton.

      She doubts that the maps will be finalized, because they will likely be challenged by the justice department for not abiding by the voting rights act of 1965.