CARY, N.C. — If there was any confusion over whether U.S. Rep. David Price will run again in 2012, those questions were put to rest at a recent town hall meeting.
Price, who represents the 4th Congressional District, covering most of southwestern Wake County, told 120 residents at Carolina Preserve that he will seek re-election, regardless of whether the redistricting maps stay the same.
"I will try to run and represent the district the best way I can," he said. "We may or may not have people entering the primary or something like that. This is my intent. But the first order of business is to challenge this map."
Republican state lawmakers redrew the district boundaries and put Democratic Congressman Brad Miller in Price's district, meaning they would meet in a primary before the general election. Under the new redistricting maps, Apex, Holly Springs and Fuquay-Varina are no longer in Price's district, and Morrisville and Cary have been split with the 2nd District.
The new 4th District would still include parts of Cary and Morrisville, but also areas as far away as the Burlington and Fayetteville.
Democrats and liberal groups plan to challenge the map in court. Miller has not yet decided whether he will run against Price, spokeswoman LuAnn Canipe said.
"This map that has been drawn, well, it looks like Vietnam or maybe Italy," Price said. "They cut the district back about 300,000 people, and then scattered them as far as Burlington to the northwest and Fayetteville to the southeast, and then took it into central Raleigh. It really was a gratuitous job of smashing not just this district but statewide. There is no way of talking about this without sounding political."
Price said getting the maps changed before November 2012 is a priority.
"Fifty-plus percent of the state's African-American population has been packed into three districts, including the new 4th District," he said. "It goes against the spirit of the Voting Rights Act. It removes African-American influence from at least four adjacent districts."