Prop 11-ization of Congressional Districts

Because Prop 11 has been such an overwhelming success, the same folks are back with a November measure that will bring Congressional Districts into the Prop 11 commission.  Yup, apparently they are so imressed with an unrepresentative commission to draw borders for millions of dollars more than the Legislature cost that they decided it would be worth another round.  So, get ready for a fight this November:

REDISTRICTING OF CONGRESSIONAL DISTRICTS. INITIATIVE CONSTITUTIONAL AMENDMENT. Removes elected representatives from the process of establishing congressional districts and transfers that authority to the recently-authorized 14-member redistricting commission. Redistricting commission is comprised of five Democrats, five Republicans, and four voters registered with neither party. Requires that any newly-proposed district lines be approved by nine commissioners including three Democrats, three Republicans, and three from neither party. Summary of estimate by Legislative Analyst and Director of Finance of fiscal impact on state and local government: Probably no significant change in state redistricting costs. (09-0027.)

The proponent of this initiative is Charles T. Munger, Jr.  He can be reached at [email protected].

By the by, Prop 11 was supposed to have no significant costs either. However, the State Auditor has already blown through the amount of money they were supposed to get under the law, which was pegged to the costs under the Legislature. So, yeah, no costs, because we were hoodwinked the first time around.

Anyway, Charles Munger is Warren Buffett’s right-hand man at Berkshire Hathaway, so a very, very wealthy man.  He gives money to some of these misguided goo-goo measures and a few right-leaning causes across the country. UPDATE: This Charles Munger is actually the son of the Berkshire Munger. My apologies for the confusion.

17 thoughts on “Prop 11-ization of Congressional Districts”

  1. While I agree that it’s a good idea to wait and see if the redistricting commission works before extending it’s power to Congressional Districts, I think it’s rather early to declare Prop 11 a failure.  

    The current system is a failure; we already know that.  I don’t believe, as said in a previous post, that we have “self-sorted.”  The current districts have no logic to them except to create safe seats for the parties.  These gerrymandered districts do not provide evidence that the state has self-sorted.  Quite the contrary.

  2. but I’ll almost certainly be voting against this measure.

    For one thing, I want to see the new system work once before agreeing that it should be expanded (or even continued).

    For another thing: for one state to change how it apportions Congressional representatives is no more than a voluntary abdication of power at the Federal level.  

  3. This was entirely predictable as a follow-on to the fake state-level reform of Prop 11.  

    And I’m now waiting with bated breath for the Republicans in the Texas legislature to propose a bill to give up their ability to gerrymander Democrats out of existence… when pigs fly.  But goo-goo liberals will be able to talk themselves into this as a nice neutral reform, just like they did with Prop 11, and they’re doing with Prop 14.

  4. L.A. CDs gerrymandered

    Maybe one of the best signs of when a political activist has lost their way is when they think gerrymandering is a good thing.

    The Legislature did not use their redistricting power in good faith; they abused it, and, frankly, they deserve to lose it.

    In regard to criticisms that Prop 11 is non-representative, it’s not the reform’s fault that the applications came in the way they did, AND just because the applicant’s demographics were very different from the state’s, doesn’t mean the demographics of the 14 not-yet-chosen commissioners will be demographically lopsided. (And regarding the partisan equality, which does not reflect the state’s voters, a redistricting process is really not akin to a legislative process. In a way, it’s a process of setting up a fair and merited playing field (should the MLB teams with the most fans, or the best record, get unrestricted power to set up every field and stadium to best serve their hitters?))

    I’m willing to bet that whatever they end up producing will at least not look like a drawing of bacteria having an orgy.

  5. When Republican-leaning states such as Florida and Texas institute an ‘independent’ redistricting commission for their congressional districts, then I will support it for California.  Until that happens, voting for Prop. 11 would be one of the most counter-productive, shoot-oneself-in-the-foot things any Democrat voter could possibly do.    

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