SCA 80
Background and Procedural Information

On February 14, 2008 Illinois Republican State Senator Matt Murphy introduced Senate Constitutional Amendment 80.  As of June 5, 2008 it has not moved to a committee.  This amendment would only affect Illinois General Assembly districts.  

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

There is no stated or implied requirement that districts be single-member.   

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

Yes.  The computer program selected by the board of elections may not use any “Demographic information not required to be used by this section or by the United States constitutional or federal law.”  This information includes the residency of incumbent legislators, political affiliations of registered voters, and previous election results.

Under the proposed legislation, how is the commission formed?

The Illinois Board of Elections must select a redistricting computer program by a majority vote of its members.  The program must randomly assign the districts and not allowed use certain demographic information listed above.
Under the proposed legislation, are competitive districts favored?

No.  Competitive districts are not included in a list of factors that the computer program must use to create the new district map.  

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

No.  The Board of Elections will announce the computer program chosen at a public meeting, although public comment is not listed as a necessity at this public meeting.  

Does the proposed legislation allow for mid-decade redistricting?

No.  After the computer program makes a new map it will not meet again until the year ending in one. 

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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