Thursday, February 24, 2005

Redistrict Early, Redistrict Often

I'm late on this one, but I was motivated to get to it after again seeing Georgia Republicans want to implement a Texas-style redistricting power grab. Well, some national Dems want to fight back by redistricting where it is to their advantage, including Illinois. Kos has the details garnered from Roll Call:
House Minority Whip Steny Hoyer (D-Md.) has spoken with several Democratic
governors in recent weeks about the possibility of revisiting their states'
Congressional lines in response to the ongoing Republican-led redistricting in
Georgia, according to informed party sources.

Faced with the prospect of Republicans redrawing Congressional lines in
a third state since the initial 2001 round of redistricting ended, a faction of
national Democrats is urging an aggressive strategy aimed at striking back at
Republican House Members in states like New Mexico and Illinois.

"We have to stop playing defense and go on the offensive," said Howard
Wolfson, who served as executive director at the Democratic Congressional
Campaign Committee during the 2002 cycle and is now a consultant with the Glover
Park Group.

"The only way to stop them from doing this is to make them pay a price
for it somewhere else," said a longtime House strategist, who spoke on the
condition of anonymity.

Democrats believe their best opportunities lie in Illinois, New Mexico
and Louisiana, where Democrats have seized control of all the levers of state
government in those states since the 2001 reapportionment and redistricting.

Democratic Govs. Rod Blagojevich (Ill.) and Bill Richardson (N.M.) as
well as high-ranking Louisiana elected officials have been contacted by members
of House leadership led by Hoyer since the Georgia legislature began their

Kos goes on to say Illinois could pick up two more Dem seats if redistricting was pursued here.

I'm not sure I like the breaking from the tradition of redistricting once every ten years, but once the practice of redistricting at will has begun by one side, I see nothing wrong with countering with the same tactics. Gerrymander away!

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