SJR 12
Background and procedural information
Senate Joint Resolution 12 would amend the Oklahoma Constitution to create a five member Redistricting Commission for state legislative districts. If passed, the potential amendment would be put onto the ballot as an initiative. The bill is currently in committee.

Under the proposed legislation, are single-member districts a requirement or otherwise implied?

Yes. The bill requires the Redistricting Commission to divide the state into as many districts as there are legislators.

Does the proposed legislation provide for Voting Rights Act compliance (e.g. can the commission use voter history information)?
Maybe. The bill requires consideration of factors such as population, compactness, political units, historical precedent, economic and political interests, and contiguous territories.

Under the proposed legislation, how is the commission formed?
The first four members of the Redistricting Commission are appointed, one each, by the President of the Senate, the Minority Leader of the Senate, the Speaker of the House, and the Minority Leader in the House. The final member is appointed by the Ethics Commission, and must be a registered Independent that has not registered as a Republican or Democrat in the past ten years.

Under the proposed legislation, are competitive districts favored?

Under the proposed legislation, can members of the public submit plans?
No. There is no mechanism established by which members of the public may submit plans or give input. After the plan has been formed, the public has sixty days to challenge the plan in the Supreme Court of Oklahoma.

Does the proposed legislation allow for mid-decade redistricting?
No. Redistricting may only be done within six months of the decennial census report.

*Note: A proposal may be neutral on whether or not to favor competitive districts for a number of reasons, including that such a requirement may be thought to conflict with other criteria, potentially create other legal issues, or is assumed to flow from the new process itself -- or it might merely not be a priority for the legislative sponsors. FairVote believes that some form of proportional voting is needed to ensure maximum competitiveness for each seat and to ensure meaningful choices for all voters.

May 14th 2008
Is the House of Representatives Too Small?

The U.S. House of Representatives has been at 435 members since 1911, when the country was a third of its current population. Research suggests that districts may now be getting too big for adequate representation.

November 15th 2006
Redistricting Reconsidered
Washington Post

Citing FairVote's Dubious Democracy 2006, an editorial notes that non-competition in U.S. House races has causes more fundamental than gerrymandering.

November 1st 2006
Lines of demarcation
Dallas-Fort Worth Star-Telegram

FairVote research cited in this commentary on lopsided redistricting, uncompetitive districts and the party primary battles they inspire.

October 30th 2006
Electile Dysfunction?
News Release Wire

Former FairVote President Matthew Cossolotto calls for a range of reforms, highlighting two problems of American democracy: "counting the votes" and "making votes count."

August 19th 2006
Eliminate districts
Contra Costa Times

CA resident calls for proportional voting in one statewide district as a congressional redistricting reform.

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