Saturday, May 28, 2011

Illinois Dem remap maniacs marginalizing GOP and voters

Chicago area districts,
Chicago Sun-Times graphic
Illinois, a so-called deep blue state, sent five Republican House freshman to Washington in January, giving the GOP an 11-8 majority in the Land of Lincoln. Four Democratic incumbents were sent packing, the fifth seat, which was held by Republican Mark Kirk, was an open seat that the Dems had been targeting for more than a decade. Kirk of course went on to win President Obama's former US Senate seat and was sworn in last fall. More on Kirk later.

The proposed map, drawn by Democratic legislative leaders behind closed doors, is a Gerrymandered mess designed to not only to return delegation to a Democratic majority, but to prop up incumbents who have seen massive population losses in their current districts. They are Bobby Rush (1st), Jesse Jackson Jr.(2nd) and Danny Davis (7th). Yes, these congressmen are Chicago African-Americans. But facts are stubborn things. We have a black president--is it necessary to draw districts designed to elect African-Americans? Hispanics are unhappy with "their" Gerrymandered district, which is represented by Luis Gutierrez. And some Hispanic leaders deem their numbers in the state warrant two districts. Which is good news--Governor Pat Quinn says he wants a "fair map." But Quinn's vision of fairness might be distorted because he won just four of Illinois' 102 counties when he was narrowly reelected last fall. So don't count on Quinn vetoing the new map.
Yes, John, I'm rolling over in my grave

Because statewide Illinois' population barely increased, the Prairie State loses a congressional seat.

Illinois' GOP delegation slammed the proposed map in a statement

Under the cover of darkness, the Democrats in Springfield proposed a new congressional map that was drawn without any input from Republicans or any consideration for the hours of testimony offered at public hearings this spring. We are very concerned that this proposal does not fairly represent the significant growth that has occurred in the Hispanic community. The proposed map carves up towns and communities with little regard to the values and beliefs of the people who live there.

"This proposal appears to be little more than an attempt to undo the results of the elections held just six months ago and we will take whatever steps necessary to achieve a map that more fairly represents the people of Illinois - they deserve nothing less."

Rep. Judy Biggert (IL-13) Rep. Peter Roskam (IL-6)

Rep. Robert Dold (IL-10) Rep. Bobby Schilling (IL-17)

Rep. Randy Hultgren (IL-14) Rep. Aaron Schock (IL-18)

Rep. Timothy Johnson (IL-15) Rep. John Shimkus (IL-19)

Rep. Adam Kinzinger (IL-11) Rep. Joe Walsh (IL-8)

Rep. Don Manzullo (IL-16)
The Dems' map carves DuPage County, with 900,000 residents Illinois' second-most populous, into four districts. Kane County, which saw its population jump 25 percent in the last ten years, also gets the four-way Slap Chop treatment. Both are Republican strongholds.

Illinois' capital, Springfield, is split into two districts, as is Peoria and Rockford. They are among Illinois' largest cities. Rockford is the biggest of these cities, with 152,000 residents. Illinois' congressional districts need to have roughly 700,000 people.

Although the US Constitution states that a member of Congress only needs to be a resident of the state they represent, not the district, it's generally politically-prudent for representatives to live among their consitutents.

Which is bad news for Republican Robert Dold (10th). The freshman's home lies in ├╝ber-liberal Jan Schakowsky's 9th. Two other House freshman, Randy Hultgren and Joe Walsh, live in the new 14th, Hultgren represents the old district. Another new Republican member of Congress, Adam Kinzinger, finds himself residing in the 2nd District--the base of Jesse Jackson Jr. Is it necessary to state Junior's party affiliation? GOPer Judy Biggert's home is now in Democrat Mike Quigley's 5th.

Illinois' Republican senator, Mark Kirk, blasted the map in a statement:

The draft map is the unfortunate result of cynical partisans who want to override the decision of Illinois voters who elected fiscal conservatives to Congress. Its main purpose is to force Nancy Pelosi back into power.

The map senselessly divides dozens of Illinois communities and denies our growing Hispanic community their rightful opportunity to be fully enfranchised with a second congressman.

This map was Gerrymandered to ensure suburban voters will have little voice in Congress.
The map is a disgraceful insult to the 12.8 million people of Illinois. Yes, Abraham Lincoln is rolling over in his grave.

Related post:

Tea Party time for Illinois redistricting

Technorati tags:

No comments: