Skip to comments.California's redistricting battle comes to a head
Posted on 01/11/2012 4:46:20 PM PST by SmithL
The three-pronged battle over which state Senate districts will be used for this year's elections is reaching a climax that will determine whether Democrats can achieve a two-thirds majority in the upper legislative house.
The state redistricting commission released maps for Senate, Assembly and congressional districts last August. It immediately became evident that with a little luck, Democrats could gain two seats in the 40-member Senate, thus reaching the two-thirds threshold and empowering them to pass tax bills without Republican support.
Republicans filed suit to block the Senate maps, only to be rebuffed by the state Supreme Court, but also launched a signature drive to challenge them via referendum.
Were the referendum to qualify, the Supreme Court would decide which maps to use for 20 Senate elections this year the commission's versions, the previous districts or court-devised ones.
The commission's maps also are under scrutiny of the U.S. Justice Department for compliance with the Voting Rights Act, with a decision due by next week unless the department seeks more time.
The referendum's signatures are being verified, but since a sample count has not indicated definitively that it will qualify, a full tally is being ordered and that will take about six weeks to complete.
Meanwhile, the contenders Republicans on one side and Secretary of State Debra Bowen and the redistricting commission on the other sent lawyers to the Supreme Court Tuesday to argue over whether the court should consider alternative maps for 2012 and if so, which maps they should use.
(Excerpt) Read more at sacbee.com ...
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Politics is about doing what you want to do for yourself and your party, and then coming up with patriotic sounding rationalizations after the fact.
The entire referendum process in California is irremediably flawed.
The Republicans are going to come out with all sorts of flag-waving reasons why they are right, even trotting out the Voting Rights Act, which they mostly oppose ... but not when it can be twisted to support their particular cause.
This whole thing stinks to high heaven.
I’ve dealt with LaRaza in Texas. They are in it for the money. Period.
I don’t have the information handy but they have care facilities where they handle various government related benefits. For a fee, of course. I’d have to find my research on that. They have numerous nonprofits that are basically fronts for lawyers. Places like this:
As quickly as things are coming to a head in California, it would probably be best for the Democrats to have the whole enchilada.
Let them raise taxes to 100% for everybody that earns any money at all. Let them even try a wealth tax on everyone who has money in the bank or investments.
Let them drive out every business in California and achieve 99% unemployment.
Then everyone who voted for them will get what they deserve.
When California collapses, and the federal government refuses to give it any more money. All the laws they passed with be meaningless. A state full of pretentious beggars.
My thoughts exactly; let them continue the process, drive the productive classes to Nevada, Idaho, Oregon and Arizona and be done with it. My only question is how many of those fleeing will be Reagan Republicans and how many will be parasites following the host?
“It immediately became evident that with a little luck, Democrats could gain two seats in the 40-member Senate, thus reaching the two-thirds threshold and empowering them to pass tax bills without Republican support.”
That will just increase the rate of the downward spiral in California. Doomsday will be closing in even faster.
Well I can't see them keeping the current 10 year old district lines.
"Independent" redistricting was a cluster(screw). But I guess maps drawn by the rat legislators would have been even worse.
Only half the seats are up? Here in IL the entire State Senate is up in a redistricting year.
I would not be surprised if not having every seat up in the first election after redistricting was declared unconstitutional, since it violates one-man, one-vote to have some people go six years without voting for a senator while others get to vote twice in two years.
I thought of this when I saw how WI Republicans redrew state senate seats in
Racine and Kenosha Counties so that there was one urban über-Democrat SD and one suburban, comfortably Republican SDs instead of two Dem-leaning urban/suburban SDs. A Republican had won one of the Dem-leaning SDs in 2010, so presumably he won’t up until 2014, while a Democrat state senator (who survived a recall election last year) would be up in 2012. My thought was, wouldn’t it be the *seats*, not just the state senators, that would be up in 2012? So if the new district that was drawn to take in urban Kenosha and Racine was given the seat number of the SD held by the Republican, and the new suburban SD was given the seat number of the SD held by the Democrat (which new SD would have which district number was entirely arbitrary, since both new SDs took in about half of the population of each of the two old SDs), then wouldn’t the Democrat be forced to run for reelection in 2012 in a heavily Republican state senate district? Sure, the Dems would then be able to win the other district in 2014, but the GOP would be padding their senate margin artificially for the final two years of Walker’s first term. Such potential abuse could only be prevented by mandating that every seat be up the first election after redistricting (in most cases, 2012), with seats that had held their prior election in 2008 elect a member to a four-year term, and seats that had last elected a member in 2010 holding an election for a two-year term. I assume that’s how Illinois does it, and for once they do something electoral right in your home state.
Look for disenfranchised voters or screwed-over state legislators in one or more states to sue because the legislature picked only certain districts to hold elections in 2012 despite every district being new.
I think that the Democrats getting the 2/3 majority is probably a good thing in the long run. Rather than a slow lingering painful slide into bankruptcy, they can dive.
Charles Munger, Jr., who put $1,000,000 into Prop 11 and wrote the subsequent Prop 20 to apply Prop 11 to Congressional districts, came to the conclusion that it would be a bad idea to challenge the maps, but the GOP went ahead anyway with the challenge.
Did anyone sue in 2002? In Wisconsin and Cali both only half the seats were up then and I assume in every redistricting year.
I don’t care for it, it creates very confusing situations.
I don’t know if anyone sued in 2002, but I think it’s one of the myriad suits from this redistricting.