ANNAPOLIS, Md. (AP) — Opponents of Maryland’s congressional redistricting plan say they have passed the first hurdle in putting the plan before voters.

Opponents said they filed about 25,000 signatures Thursday night, exceeding the more than 18,000 they needed by June 1.

If the signatures are certified by the state’s elections board, the referendum supporters will have until July 1 to collect the remainder of the 55,736 signatures needed to put a referendum on the ballot.

Republican Delegate Neil Parrott of Washington County said opponents would go full speed ahead in June to get the remaining signatures.

Republicans have been especially critical of the redrawn 6th congressional district in western Maryland, which has been redrawn to include a significant portion of Montgomery County, which has more Democratic voters.

(Copyright 2012 by The Associated Press. All Rights Reserved.)


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