My friend Sherry Bebitch Jeffe doesn’t like the new California districts being drawn up by the independent redistricting commission:
The outcry that followed the Commission’s first draft of new district lines seemed to knock the new approach off-kilter.
Latino leaders demanded more districts, to reflect their increasing demographic and political clout (not to mention the mandate of the federal Voting Rights Act).
Their cries of “Foul!” were echoed by Republicans worried that, because of the state’s changing demographics, their new districts will include dangerously high numbers of Latinos—not a GOP-friendly voter group.
African-American activists decried proposed boundaries that could lead to fewer black lawmakers. L.A.’s Westside is reeling from the possible loss of at least one of the most powerful Jewish-Americans in Congress.
Sounds good to me! Can you imagine any decently competitive redistricting scheme that wouldn’t result in Latino leaders and African-American activists demanding more districts? Is it so bad that some Republicans might have to learn how to deal with “high numbers of Latinos”?
I thought one of the points of passing an anti-gerrymandering law was to shake things up. Well, it looks like things are being shaken. Politicians will have to explain themselves afresh–and actually worry about losing. If Jeffe has a telling objection to this, she forgot to put it in her column.
P.S.: Here’s what my Congressional district might look like. My neighbors are worried, but it doesn’t seem horrible. It’s a coastal district! Those people east of the 405 can have their own congressperson.