SJR 13
Background and Procedural Information

On January 8, 2008 Indiana Democratic Senator Vi Simpson introduced Indiana Senate Joint Resolution 13 (IN S.J.R. 13).  As of June 5, 2008 the resolution has not moved to a committee.  

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

No.  Single-member districts are neither required not otherwise implied.   

Does the proposed legislation provide for Voting Rights Act compliance (e.g. can the commission use voter history information)?

The proposed legislation would forbid Party registration and voting history data in map drawing but would allow it to be used to test maps for compliance with federal and constitutional laws including the Voting Rights Act.

Under the proposed legislation, how is the commission formed?

The Indiana Judicial Council will call for nominations from interested citizens of Indiana.  The court will select ten nominees from the largest party, ten nominees from the second largest party and five from neither of those parties.  The Indiana legislative leadership including the Speaker of the House, House Minority Leader, President Pro Tem of the Senate, Senate Majority Leader will each select one member to serve on the commission.  These four commissioners will then select the fifth member of the commission who will also serve as chairman.  They will choose this commissioner from the pool of five nominees who are not members of the two largest political parties in the state.  The Commissioners will approve plans for Congressional and General Assembly districts.
Under the proposed legislation, are competitive districts favored?

Yes.  The commission is required to use eight factors to create the districts.  Fostering competition is one of these eight priorities.    

Under the proposed legislation, can members of the public submit plans?

No.  The public may give comment for a thirty-day period after the initial plan is proposed.   

Does the proposed legislation allow for mid-decade redistricting?

No.  Redistricting may only be performed in years ending in one unless a court order demands redistricting or the number of Congressional or legislative districts is changed.  
November 19th 2005
Redistricting reform: How best to tackle ultra-safe districts
Sacramento Bee

FairVote's Rob Richie argues in commentary running in several newspapers that redistricting reformers must challenge winner-take-all elections.

November 16th 2005
In Canada, regular folks are put to work on reforms
San Jose Mercury News

Steven Hill prescribes a citizens assembly as a solution for achieving consensus on redistricting reform in California.

November 15th 2005
Citizens Must Drive Electoral Reform
Roll Call

Heather Gerken of Harvard Law suggests a citizens assembly as one means to achieve redistricting reform and buy-in from voters.

November 13th 2005
Arnold had the right idea about redistricting
The Herald News

The Herald News cites Fairvote with commentary about the dangers of Gerrmandering and redistricting obstacles.

November 13th 2005
ARNOLD AGONIZES: How the election changed the governor -- and California
San Francisco Chronicle

Article discussing the recent failure of redistricting reform in California and the potential solution in letting the citizens decide through a Citizens Assembly on Election Reform.

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