That might change this year, as Republicans who control the new mapmaking process consider dividing Nashville between different districts for the first time in memory.
Around the country, the decennial redrawing of political boundaries is putting a spotlight on cities, often the major Democratic vote centers in any state. As legislators jockey for position and political advantage, they are increasingly considering ways to carve up those cities, either to dilute their influence or to bolster their power.
The phenomenon — and the outrage it has generated among minority parties in the states at play — is bipartisan.
“Republicans will oftentimes split cities in order to dilute the votes of Democratic voters in districts that will be heavily Republican, so they want a little piece to bury under the votes of people who vote the other way,” said Kathay Feng, national redistricting director at Common Cause, a government watchdog organization. “Democrats, on the other hand, want to split cities because they can vote in solid Democratic patterns and they want to use them as anchors in as many districts as possible.”