The New Boundary Fiasco
Justice wasn’t even pretending to be blind. Redistricting shouldn’t have caught anyone by surprise. We knew it was coming for ten years. In fact, it happens every ten years like clockwork based upon the census. Redistricting provided us with a classic example of how the two major political parties can make a disaster out of something that should have been easy.
The committees were charged with the duty of making the districts compact, contiguous and keeping communities of interest together. Anyone looking at the result would have to conclude they failed at their mission. People from two political parties had one goal in mind: Making sure it would be easier for their party’s candidate to win elections. This agenda polluted their ability to approach the task objectively and doomed the committee to failure before it even began.
As a result, the redistricting decisions went to our judicial branch of government. Why would the legislative branch of government want the judicial branch to legislate? The judicial branch is for determining how our laws apply to personal circumstances, not figuring out where people stand to have the best chances for reelection. Most judges are appointed by politicians, not elected. Many are motivated by making the politicians happy, not serving the needs of the people.
One example of the bizarre process resulted in the new “riverboat gambling” district. A St. Louis County state rep. district mysteriously includes just the portion of St. Charles County where the casino is located, but not the apartments next to it because that would add too much population to the district. Jumping over the Missouri River is contrary to the charge of making the district compact and contiguous.
A constituent suggested we find some quilters to serve on the committee next time. They know how to assemble pieces together that make sense and fit together nicely. My mother is in a quilting group. They may talk about politics, but at the end of the session, their quilts match up perfectly! Here is a link to the maps so you can look up your own district. Currently another committee is working on redrawing the senate districts and the legislators are considering a modification to the state law to delay candidate filing.
This is another example of where the two big parties have failed us, especially when they were charged with the duty of redistricting. Commissioning them to serve the general public when we know they are motivated by other factors ends up with a failure for them as well as the taxpayers who are trusting them to provide good and honest government.
Your thoughts on redistricting are important to me, so please share what you think here: Mail to Cynthia
A Little Bit of Humor…
Remember, you can’t fool
all the people all the time…
…but you must fool
them during the campaign.