Contact: Rep. Vruwink
The lead authors of a redistricting reform bill that was introduced in January once again requested a public hearing. (See attached letter.) Rep. Don Vruwink (D-Milton), one of the lead authors, issued the following statement:
“Last week the U.S. Supreme Court heard oral arguments on the challenge to Wisconsin’s gerrymandered districts. Now we are asking for a public hearing so that the citizens of Wisconsin can be heard.
“The people of Wisconsin are tired of partisan politics getting in the way of good government. Our gerrymandered districts are a prime example. Wisconsin is about evenly divided between Republican voters and Democratic voters, yet the Legislature is tilted drastically in one direction because of gerrymandering.
“Our current redistricting process allows the party in power to stay in power and grab even more power. People want a chance to be represented by the best candidate regardless of the party they belong to. It can’t be said often enough: We should let voters choose their legislators, not legislators choose their voters.
“Assembly Bill 44 takes redistricting out of the hands of legislators and puts it into the hands of the non-partisan Legislative Reference Bureau. Instead of allowing oddly-shaped districts that favor the party in power, AB 44 requires the LRB to create districts that are as compact and contiguous as possible and that split up municipalities and counties as little as possible. Gerrymandering guarantees that many legislative districts will be represented by a single party for 10 years. Voters want to have a choice in every election.”