Wow! the intellectual backflips engaged in by some commetators who are trying to
believe this is not a good idea are staggering!I can't get my
small mind around the notion that elected officials drawing electoral maps is
not a conflict of interest.Of course the aim is to form a balanced,
transparent, and yes, non-partisan independent commission (that's what
independent means).And, really! Downtown Salt Lake City (north of
the 80 only) votes in the same district as St. George? Come on!Our
congressional map is blatant in its deliberate silencing of the majority of
voters in this state.elections.utah.gov/map/district-mapsbetterboundaries.org/
The impact of gerrymandering is clear, scientific in its accuracy, and shows a
7-12% advantage to one or the other party in heavily gerrymandered districts.
In Utah, it favors the GOP. In Oregon, it favors the Dems. There
are 14 states with non-partisan commissions and though perhaps not guaranteed to
be fair, they are more likely to keep things equitable. There is no reason Utah
can't be one of those. These 14 states are not GOP or Dem dominated states
either! The only thing that makes this partisan is that the GOP would no longer
benefit from heavily gerrymandered districts any longer. If the Dems gain a
foothold in Utah somewhere down the line, then they would not benefit, etc...
Democrats hiding behind an Independent panel concept is still a Democrats
initiative. And they are serious about this bipartisan appearance? Oh boy! Here
we go again!
Quoting our beloved ex-President Barack Hussein Obama, "We won and you
Liberals have failed to elect someone at the ballot box, then failed in the
courts to change the boundaries of Utah Congressional districts. Now liberals
are trying an initiative to gerrymander a Democrat Congressional Seat away from
the Republicans By using unelected, unaccountable liberals in a back door
drawing room. No thanks.
Independent commission? Meaning what? That half the commission members are
from each party. Thus giving the minority party an oversized say in state
politics? No!The system we have isn't perfect by any means but
it's fair to the strength of the electorate in the state. If the dems want
to win seats they have to pull back from the extreme left candidates. I mean
take a look at the last Senate candidate. Who did the Dems put up to challenge
Lee? A grocery store clerk whose only qualification was that it is a
transgender person.Dump the extreme leftwing politics dems, move
towards the center rather than away from it and you might actually win an
election. But until then the Elected Legislature should continue to do the
redistricting. The people's representatives, not some appointed commission
designed to give more power to the minority than they really should have.
Computers are now used to parse out districts based on political party
affiliations of people registered to vote in those districts.Computers COULD and SHOULD be used to simply base districts based on
POPULATION numbers alone without any consideration of party affiliation. All
districts should simply have approximately equal populations and nothing more or
This would be one of the best things that could possibly happen in Utah.But it won't.The GOP might not be able to control
Republicans hold all of Utah's six seats in Congress, as well as
supermajorities in both the state House and Senate, suggesting the state is one
of the nation's more prominent examples of gerrymandering.Or,
indicating Utah voters overwhelmingly reject dems.According to
ballotpedia, of the 43 states with more than 1 congressional district, the state
legislature determines the boundaries in 37. The people elected the
legislatures, not the other way around as the article suggests.if
the dems want more power, they should nominate more palatable candidates and
work more to appeal to Utah voters. It is not the fault of Utah voters that the
dems don't reflect Utah values or interests.
This idea is a start, but what's in the best interest of Utah voters, and
our democracy, is to develop software to create the boundaries, based on certain
criteria. Try not to carve up municipalities, counties, etc. Make them as
compact and contiguous as possible. Avoid the idea of income, gender, race,
having anything to do with the process. In short, turn it back into a
district of people on certain defined geography, instead of geography defined by
like minded people living upon it. Make candidates work for a win with at least
some diversity present.
I am strongly in favor of this initiative. I hope they can gather the needed
signatures and get it on the ballot. This would be good.
This is a battle as old as the republic. The losing party complains about how
districts are drawn up. The winning party makes the "democracy"
argument. The losing party makes the "fairness" argument. The winning
party never wants to share power with the losing party. This problem exists in
nearly every state. There are heaps of case law governing it but that never
stops new law suits from putting food on the tables of the plethora of lawyers
who have small mouths to feed. Donors keep donating. Parties keep fighting. In
the end, it's never really about what is good or right. It's simply
about winning. Losers want to lose less, but they'll call they're
schemes by a variety of more palatable names like "independent
commission" and winners want to keep winning and they'll call their
actions "democracy in action" while the people sit by and laugh or weep
or more likely just smirk, because they know this fight will continue. It's
part of our national DNA.
Agreed.Have you even seen those District maps?It's worse
than Chicago style politics.Salt Lake county is cut up and parsed
into 4 districts, with some parts of Salt Lake County being watered down
with Utah counties from Idaho to Arizona.Sorry Republicans, but truly, in all fairness, at lease one heavily blue district of the
majority being Salt Lake County by all common sense and reason
'should' be a Democrat.
"drawing legislative and congressional boundaries in the hands of an
independent commission."You mean, not having partisan political
people carve up voting districts? What a novel ideal.I contend that
all voting districts be drawn so that the shape of the district has an actual
geometric name. If that means that one party will most likely get zero
representatives, so be it. Completely save political districts are
why we have a bunch of radicals in office. They have no fear about not getting
There is no such thing as an independent or non partisan redistricting
commission. There are simply those bodies honest about their biases and those
groups who deny or otherwise hide their affiliations.Utah votes
overwhelming GOP since the Democrats took that hard left turn in the early 70s.
The elected legislature accurately reflects the views of most Utahns no matter
how much a few, very vocal inner city liberals try to claim otherwise.Utah is in the minority of States not to have any lawsuits filed the last two
times we have redrawn legislative and congressional district boundaries.What some want is a democrat safe congressional seat carved out of urban
SLC. This makes for a geographically tiny district with zero concern for rural
interests and is a vote to cancel out one of our other votes that will include
rural interests, That isn't in the best interest of Utah
voters and the Democrats are not entitled to it.Call this initiative
what it really is: Let the minority party and other liberals draw out boundaries
rather than the elected majority.