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Forum: Redistricting reform needed

Updated: May 11, 2014 10:10AM



In his Jan. 30 column (“A way for you to reform Illinois”), Phil Kadner wrote about the extensive gerrymandering of legislative districts that occurs every decde in Illinois and a way to change it.

When one party controls the Legislature as the Democrats do now, the legislative leaders can virtually guarantee their candidates’ re-election, by realigning the boundaries of House and Senate districts.

The districts typically have no discernible geometric shape, formed to make the Democratic candidate more electable. In 2012, incumbents in the House won re-election in 97 percent of the districts, and two-thirds of them did not face a challenger.

Some organizations, including the League of Woman Voters, the Illinois Manufacturers Association, have joined together to form Yes for Independent Maps to place a referendum on the Nov. 4 ballot to take the mapmaking out of the hands of politicians.

The organization needs at least 300,000 signatures on petitions to get the referendum before voters and is circulating petitions through this month.

If you need more information about it, and to see a funny video about how it is done now, go to http://independentmaps.org/what/

To volunteer, visit http://independentmaps.org/get-involved/

Verna Thiede

Crete



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