North Carolina Redistricting Watch HR 1448
Background and procedural information
Bill HR 1448, introduced into the North Carolina House on 3/8/05 by Democrat Eleanor Kinnaird, proposed to amend Art. II § 3 of the state constitution. The bill ultimately failed.

Under the proposed legislation, are single-member districts a requirement or otherwise implied?
No. The bill does not contain any explicit requirement for single-member districts, nor is there a specific requirement for single-member districts in the state constitution.

Does the proposed legislation provide for Voting Rights Act compliance (e.g. can the commission use voter history information)?
Yes. The bill prohibits the commission from considering the political affiliation of the voters, voting data from previous elections, and the location of incumbents’ residences, but make an exception for compliance with federal law.

Under the proposed legislation, how is the commission formed?
The bill proposes a nine-member commission with members appointed in the following manner: two by the chief justice of the state supreme court (from two different political parties), three by the governor (with no more than two from the same political party), one by the speaker of the house, one by the minority leader in the house, one by the president of the senate, and one by the senate minority leader.

Under the proposed legislation, are competitive districts favored?

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

 Possibly. There is no express prohibition, but public submittal is also not expressly allowed. Further, North Carolina currently allows public access to a redistricting computer system, but it is unclear whether the redistricting committees would consider the plans created by the public.

Does the proposed legislation allow for mid-decade redistricting?
No. Once the districts have been drawn and agreed upon, they cannot be changed until the next decennial census.

*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.
June 18th 2006
Where politicians dare to tread
San Francisco Chronicle

The San Francisco Chronicle editorial board endorses the British Columbia Citizens Assembly approach to electoral reform, specifically noting the potential for proportional representation in California.

March 21st 2006
Real redistricting reform is proportional representation
San Francisco Examiner

Rob Dickinson of Californians for Electoral Reform writes a commentary on how recent proposals to make the redistricting process fairer miss the mark. For real progress in how we elect our representatives, we need to turn to proportional voting.

March 1st 2006
Tanner redistricting bill gains Senate sponsor
The Hill

Senator Tim Johnson introduced a companion bill to Rep. John Tanner's federal redistricting reform legislation. The identical bills, supported by FairVote, would set up state commissions to handle redistricting only once a decade.

December 20th 2005
Overhaul of state electoral system sought

Following on the heels of the defeat of redistricting reform in California, Republican and Democratic legislators plan on introducing legislation to create a citizens assembly for election reform and discuss proportional voting for the state.

December 11th 2005
A Dramatic Idea for Election Reform
New York Times

A Times reader highlights the fundamental weakness of any single-member district-based system: gerrymandering is unavoidable.

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