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City Council Battle Over Redistricting Turns Racial

DENVER (CBS4)– A battle over Denver City Council redistricting has council members taking issue that some feel has turned racial.

The debate stems from a newsletter by Councilwoman Debbie Ortega in which she states the redistricting maps should “defend everyone’s right to elect a representative that looks and talks like them.”

“This is a huge step backwards it seems to me to make statements like that,” said Denver City Councilman Charlie Brown.

He believes it’s an embarrassment to the city, “It really just blew my mind when I saw it.”

Brown calls it racial politicking.

“If I would have put this out there would have been a recall movement already started,” said Brown.

Ortega said her remarks on redistricting have been blown out of proportion.

“This is not racial politicking,” said Ortega. “All I intended by that statement is by the end of the day, I have to ensure the map adopted by the city meets federal law. That’s it.”

Ortega admits if she had to do it over, “I probably could have worded it differently.”

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