New Senate Map Heads to Court

Republicans aim to get new map drawn

by Brian Leubitz

After their fallen savior, Arnold Schwarzenegger, set up the redistricting commission and pushed it through the electorate, Republicans were admittedly a bit worried.  Well, it seems they are in an all-out panic as they are concerned that Democrats could get a 2/3 majority in the Senate.  They are already gathering signatures to put the measure on the ballot, and they have raised a decent amount of cash for that effort.  

But there is some concern on their side that the maps would be used for 2012 even if they do get it on the ballot.  And so, a lawsuit:

The plaintiff in the lawsuit is an Orange County businesswoman but it was prepared by attorneys for the group Fairness and Accountability in Redistricting (FAIR) , which is backed by the California Republican Party and Senate Republican Caucus.

“We think there are serious constitutional flaws in the Senate plan related to what the commission was required to do and what they ended up doing,” said Dave Gilliard, the political consultant behind the group.  “There were numerous examples of cities and counties being split between districts irrationally and without explanation.” (LA Times)

Except there is one, giant, gaping whole in their logic: somebody had to be split up.  In every redistricting process where you have to divide every district equally, you have to split some geographic or political community up somehow.  That’s just the numbers.  This year Sacramento County drew the short stick, but it is always somebody.  It seems a big stretch to say that the commission didn’t follow the new rules requiring consideration of boundaries, especially as that was third down the line, with Voting Rights Act considerations trumping all else.

Of course, they are bringing the VRA up in this legislation, but considering the lengths the commission went to in their process on the VRA, anything more than a few minor tweaks seems unlikely.  But, facing irrelevance, the Senate Republicans are pulling out all the stops.

25 thoughts on “New Senate Map Heads to Court”

  1. All of the oral testimony given to the Commission at every hearing is summarized online.  All of the written testimony given to the Commission is available online.  The statements made by commission members during their discussions is available online.

    “Irrationally and without explanation?”  Neither charge is true.  You can, from any Internet-connected computer, look it up.

    To paraphrase Dorothy Parker, this is not a lawsuit that should be tossed aside lightly — it should be hurled aside with great force.

  2. Let’s not count our chickens before they hatch

    I have no doubt that the Reapportionment is Fair

    I have no doubt that it will stand

    But, I’m getting increasingly fearful of the 2012 elections

    It is possible that Obama will lose California


    But, if he does, our Legislatures could look pretty similar to what they look like now

    I’m expecting the Republicans to nominate some Worthless Bozo

    But, sometimes worthless Bozos win

    (see: Bush, George)

    Stay tuned

  3. that were so annoyingly visible during the 2000 Florida Recount?

    People also need to be reminded the law gave the Republicans

    EQUAL representation with Democrats on the Commission,

    even though they are a minority party in the state.

    They hold only 15 of 40 Senate seats, 28 of 80 Assembly seats,

    only 3 of the mayor’s offices of our 10 largest cities,

    and only 1/3 of all registered voters… jeebus!

    Oops… I forgot. They have more money than God,

    so I guess they do deserve a few extra representatives in government.

  4. The referendum campaign just suspended its paid drive, effective Monday.  I don’t know if it’s temporary or permanent.

  5. Was it not this site that was against the redistricting committee at one point? The reasoning, I believe, was weak. Something like knee-jerk politics at its worst, along the lines of, if a Republican is behind it then it must be bad.

    Now Republicans are deadset against it.

    I’m so jaded now, that with both parties against it. I have to be passionately for it.

    On another note. What do people here know about the Reason Foundation?

    They had this quote on their site, and I can’t believe it is correct:

    California also squanders a massive amount of transportation money that never makes it onto roads, spending $93,464 in administrative costs for every mile of state road. New York ($89,194 per mile), Massachusetts ($71,982), and New Jersey ($62,748) also compare poorly to states like Texas ($6,529) and Virginia ($6,370) that spend dramatically less on administrative costs.

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