HB 741

HB 741

Background and procedural information:
Providing a process for establishing districts for the election of members of Congress; establishing criteria for creating districts; directing the Department of Legislative Services to hold public hearings and develop up to three congressional districting plans; establishing a temporary Redistricting Advisory Commission and specifying members' qualifications and the duties of the Commission; directing the General Assembly to act on the plan or plans within specified times; etc.

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

Does the proposed legislation provide for Voting Rights Act compliance (e.g. can the commission use voter history information)?
Yes. No districts may be drawn for the purpose of diluting minority voting strength, but no use may be made of political affiliation, registration, polling data, etc. to achieve that purpose.

Under the proposed legislation, how is the commission formed?
9 members, 4 appointed by the governor, 2 by the president of the senate, 2 by speaker of the house; at least 3 must be of the minority party. These members then elect a chair. Members may not have been a member of the general assembly, congress, a candidate for either, an appointed official, campaign manager, or lobbyist. Members must also reflect the geographic, gender and racial or ethnic diversity of the state.

Under the proposed legislation, are competitive districts favored?

Under the proposed legislation, can members of the public submit plans?
Members of the public are encouraged to give input at a series of public meetings and critique the proposed plans, however nowhere does the bill state that a member of the public may produce his own plan.

Does the proposed legislation allow for mid-decade redistricting?

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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