Sunday, April 28, 2013

Redistricting Reform

By Jeff Simpson

To absolutely no fanfare, a bunch of freshman legislators got together and authored a redistricting reform bill.

  MADISON) State Representative Robb Kahl (D-Monona) is joining with the 13 other freshman
Democratic Assembly members in authoring a redistricting reform bill. The bill is based on the
highly successful redistricting process used in Iowa.

“I am joining with my colleagues, all of whom have not served previously in the legislature, to
move reform forward,” Kahl stated. “Both parties have erred in not acting to reform the
redistricting process when the opportunity presented itself. As new members, we are committed
from day one to seeing reform put into place.”

The bill, now designated as LRB-0665/1, will require the non-partisan Legislative Reference
Bureau to redraw district boundaries following the census. Unlike the current map that is in
place where one district makes a u-turn around another and communities of interest are split,
districts will be drawn to be compact, equal in population and with boundary lines that do not
look like jigsaw puzzle pieces.

Anyone who has paid attention these last couple of years, knows that there is not a better issue to showcase the republican parties lack of ethics, morals, honesty than the anti-democratic way they redistricted our state last time.

The republican party has decided its better to chose their voters, instead of the voters choosing their representatives.    In the last election(under the new districts), voters turned out overwhelmingly in support of Democratic Candidates, yet the democrats LOST seats!  

This is not only anti-democratic, it has also proven to be incredibly costly for the taxpayers of WI!  

However, I see two problems with this legislation.  The first being because it had bipartisan support and massive support of people, and press, from all over Wisconsin, do not expect it to be on Robin Vos's agenda anytime soon(which is what happens when the legislators choose their voters). 

Secondly, how long if it does pass, do the republicans wait to pass a bill that takes all power away from the legislative fiscal bureau and makes the whole bureau appointees of the Governor?  

Even when this bill dies in committee, it is nice to see some legislators actually going to Madison to LEGISLATE, instead of sitting in their gerrymandered district forever because they are incapable of ever getting a job in the private sector(see - Nass, Steve)

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  1. Nice to see the Dems get some guts and act like a reformist party of the people.

    Maybe the Dem Comms team will launch into action.

  2. Sandy Pasch and Penny Bernard Schaber are not freshmen legislators and both were in office when the Dems were in power and had the chance to change the law. They were in complete power and could have changed the law if they wanted. They thought they would stay in power and get to draw the lines, they rolled the dice, they lost.

    1. So if Gang A doesn't rob a bank, that somehow makes it OK for Gang B to rob it?

    2. Not to mention the swearing to secrecy, the caucus style procedures and the destruction of thousands of legal documents.

      Tell me again how moral your side is, I keep forgetting.

  3. Neither Pasch nor Schaber nor any Dem brought up a redistricting bill. To now stand up and don a pious halo for a non-partisan solution falls quite short.

    The swearing to secrecy was stupid (not illegal), the caucus style procedures were not illegal, the destruction of documents if pertaining to the lawsuit will be taken care of, but it won't change what's happened in redistricting.

    1. Well, we don't know that the caucus style politics was illegal or not, but we no it sure is unethical. But anyway you cut it, it's still fascism.