HJR 28
Background and Procedural Information

On December 14, 2007 Virginia Democratic Representative Brian Moran introduced Virginia House Joint Resolution 28 (VA H.J.R. 28).  As of June 11, 2008 it is stalled in a House Committee.  It authorized a five-person independent redistricting commission to create new districts for Virginia legislative and congressional districts.   

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

Yes.  Single-member districts are a requirement.   

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

No.  The commission is not required to provide for Voting Rights Act compliance.  Also the commission is not restricted from using any voter history information.

Under the proposed legislation, how is the commission formed?

The legislative leaders of the two largest political parties present in both the House of Delegates and Senate would each nominate a pool of three candidates for one commission position.  The Chief Justice of the Virginia Supreme Court would choose one nominee from each pool to form the first four commissioners.  These four commissioners would, with at least three positive votes, choose a fifth and final commissioner to serve as chairperson.  The Chairperson must not be affiliated with either of the two largest political parties in the state.  If the Commission cannot develop a plan then the Virginia Supreme Court will choose from among the plans that are supported by the different commission members.
Under the proposed legislation, are competitive districts favored?

No.  The Commissions is not instructed to craft competitive districts.   

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

No.  Members of the public may not submit plans, question, or attend public forums to discuss the redistricting plans.   

Does the proposed legislation allow for mid-decade redistricting?

No.  Redistricting is only allowed in years ending in one.   
October 23rd 2005
Who Should Redistrict?

The New York Times Magazine explains the dilemmas many states, including California, face as they attempt to create competitive and fair congressional districts. Dean Murphy cites FairVote's statistics.

October 15th 2005
Wamp fresh leadership for sagging Republicans
The Tennessean

According to FairVote's Ryan O'Donnell, the Republican party should seize the opportunity to embrace electoral reforms, and take the lead on ending gerrymandering.

October 5th 2005
Mapping the way to a better system
Boston Herald

Why Massachusetts should turn a critical eye towards gerrymandering. This article mentions Fairvote.

October 2nd 2005
Several states may change redistricting process
L.A. Times

Discussion of redistricting practices in California, Massachusetts and Florida. Mentions Tanner's bill.

September 25th 2005
Local GOP breaks with governor to oppose redistricting
Auburn Journal

An article about the debate over a proposal that would give a panel of judges the responsibility of redistricting

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