Chances for creation of a new congressional district tailored for state Sen. Gary K. Hart (D-Santa Barbara) appeared to improve Tuesday when Republican congressional leaders included a new Democratic coastal district in their redistricting plan.
The plan, unveiled by Rep. John T. Doolittle (R-Rocklin) in Sacramento, was the first sign that congressional Republicans might support a new Democratic district along the coastline of Ventura and Santa Barbara counties.
Congressional Democrats have backed two plans that call for a new Democratic-leaning district in the two-county area.
Boundaries would be similar to those of Hart's state Senate district.
Negotiations over the boundaries of California's 52 congressional seats--including the location of seven new seats created because of population increases--have been stuck for days, partly because of Republican opposition to the new coastal district.
Republican leaders previously had opposed creation of both the coastal district and a new Democratic district in downtown Los Angeles.
But the plan released Tuesday included both districts.
The plan shows 27 seats where Republicans might win and includes seats for the two Republican congressmen who now represent Ventura County--Robert J. Lagomarsino and Elton Gallegly.
Lagomarsino, whose district would move inland from the coast, would have a district where registered voters are 49% Republican and 39% Democrat and where Pete Wilson received 59% of the vote for governor in 1990.
Gallegly's new district under the Republican plan would be 51% Republican and 38% Democrat.
About 60% of voters favored Wilson in 1990.
No such breakdowns were available for the Democratic coastal district.
Detailed maps of the districts were not available.
The state Legislature and Gov. Wilson, not Congress, approve the boundaries. But the plans of the state's Republican and Democratic congressional delegations have been seen as indicators of what each party will finally accept.