Wed., November 3, 2010 1:04am (EDT)

Barrow Defeats McKinney, But Redistricting Looms
By Orlando Montoya
Updated: 3 years ago

SAVANNAH, Ga.  —  
Congressman John Barrow addresses supporters in Savannah.  (photo Orlando Montoya)
Congressman John Barrow addresses supporters in Savannah. (photo Orlando Montoya)
John Barrow has secured a US House seat for Democrats this election, but he wins in a district that was drawn for Democrats. That could change with redistricting on the horizon.

East Georgia's 12th District was competitive for a pair of cycles, but with four wins now for Barrow, it's hard to see the 12th District now as anything but a safe Democratic seat.

His Republican challenger Raymond McKinney attributes Barrow's win to way the district was drawn up.

"There are jokes about it being gerrymandered and I think you just saw proof of it tonight," McKinney says. "[Barrow] may be entrenched in this district for 2010, but I think if you look at the vote numbers and see how this district gets redrawn, Congressman Barrow might not be in that good of a shape."

The Republican-dominated legislature and Governor now might redraw the district to the Democrats' disadvantage.

In fact, all Congressional districts will be redrawn based on population figures from this year's Census.

For his part, Barrow says, the lesson he draws from his victory has nothing to do with politics.

He says, it's about putting his constituents first, above all else.

"If you vote the interest of your district, you're going to be successful," Barrow says. "I think that's what I take away from this election."

Barrow is a conservative Democrat who distanced himself from national Democrats by voting against the health care overhaul and bank bailouts.

And in the end, McKinney just failed to attract much attention or money.

A nuclear project manager from Lyons, he had Tea Party backing and Sarah Palin's endorsement.