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The Source: Making Redistricting More Fair, Less Partisan

source-redistricting.jpg
All About Redistricting / http://bit.ly/1h5Ha0N

Texas continues to grapple in federal court over its election maps as a result of partisan cartography that rewards one party over the other. The central question is: Does it illegally impact the voter representation of minority voters simultaneously?

But is there a fairer way of setting up the maps from the start, which would better represent communities in elections and avoid time in the court?

Many states think so and have tried alternatives to allowing their elected officials to pick where the lines should be drawn.  Six states currently have independent commissions creating their state and/or congressional election maps.*

Why have other states made the change? Why isn't it more popular?

Guests:

  • Jeff Wentworth, veteran Texas lawmaker who spent 20 years trying to get redistricting reform passed.
  • Justin Levitt, law professor at Loyola University in Los Angeles and maintains the website All About Redistricting.
  • Maria Blanco, sits on the independent California Citizens Redistricting Commission, which determined California's recent voting maps.

*Initially the post identified 11 states with independent commissions instead of six, additional states have commissions independent of the legislature, but allow politicians to serve on them.
This is the first segment in the July 24 edition of The Source, which airs at 3 p.m. on KSTX 89.1 FM. 

Paul Flahive can be reached at Paul@tpr.org and on Twitter at @paulflahive