The D.C. Democratic State Committee bowed to protests from community organizations last week, and decided not to change the boundaries of two districts from which four city delegates will be chosen for the Democratic National Conference in Memphis later this year.
A special 35-member panel set up by the state committee had tentatively recommended redrawing the lines in a differnt way than had been done for the Democratic National Convention in 1976. But that plan ran into stiff opposition from about halfa dozen community groups who complained that the proposed divisions would guarantee only minimal representation from poorer sections of the city.
In the face of that opposition, the special panel decided to recommend no change in the district boundaries, and last Thursday night, the full committee, which is the policy-making organization of the city's Democratic Party, accepted that recommendation.
As proposed by the panel, one of the two districts would have been composed of wards one (Adams-Morgan and Mt. Pleasant). two (downtown and Southwest), four (upper Northwest east of Rock Creek Park) and six (Capitol Hill and near Northeast). The second district would have consisted of wards three (West of Rock Creek Park), five (most of Northeast), seven (far Northeast and far Southeast) and eight (Anacoctia).
Wards three and four are the most affluent in the city as well as those with the largest number of registered voters and the highest voter turnouts. Opponents of the plan argue that if the proposed system were instituted, those two wards would dominate their respective districts. Already, four of the 11 city representatives - who would automatically attend the national meeting because of their positions in the party - live in wards three or four.
The plan to be retained creates one district form wards three, four, five and seven - the four most politically active wards in the city - and another district of wards one, two, six, and eight - the four least active wards.
The two representatives from each wards will be chosen in the sept. 12 primary election. Three other at-large delegates are to be selected by the state committee in October.