Former U.S. Attorney General Eric Holder says his political group, the National Democratic Redistricting Committee, is getting involved in races in Wisconsin and other battleground states to elect people “who will do redistricting in a fair way come 2021.”
“You don’t have fair elections here in Wisconsin. People’s voices are not being heard,” Holder said in an interview on “UpFront with Mike Gousha,” produced in partnership with WisPolitics.com.
Holder has endorsed Milwaukee County Judge Rebecca Dallet in the race for Wisconsin Supreme Court. He campaigned for her in Milwaukee and Madison last week.
He also said the NDRC will be involved in the race for governor and state legislative contests.
“What we are trying to do nationwide is to make sure that we put in place people who will do redistricting in a fair way come 2021, unlike what was done in 2011, and specifically what was done here in Wisconsin,” Holder said.
Holder said gerrymandered districts have “frustrated democracy, as opposed to promoting it.”
Holder also discussed the NDRC’s lawsuit against Republican Gov. Scott Walker, trying to force Walker to call special elections for two open seats in the state Legislature. Both seats have been vacant since the lawmakers who held them resigned in late December to join Walker’s administration.
Walker has said the seats should be filled in the general election in November to save money and because the Legislature’s business is mostly wrapped up for the year.
But Holder said Walker is concerned Republicans would lose the seats if a special election is held.
“It really strikes me that the law is pretty clear here. The law says those seats have to be filled as promptly as possible. What Gov. Walker is doing is inconsistent with the law. And I think his desire not to hold these special elections is a political calculation on his part,” Holder said.
Holder also said it would be an “impeachable offense” if President Trump were to fire Special Counsel Robert Mueller.
“I think that if (Mueller) were to be fired, for instance, that is something that would require our Congress to show some backbone where they have not done so in the immediate past. That I think would be an impeachable offense. Congress would have to step up and assume its constitutional duty,” Holder said.
Also on the program, Sen. Alberta Darling, R-River Hills, predicted Gov. Walker’s $100 million school safety package would pass the Senate.
“We’re going to get this done. We have to get it done and we have to get it done soon. We can’t wait and do politics with school safety,” she said.
Darling called it a “very, very good package” that would give school boards flexibility to determine how best to protect schools.
She also said the Senate would seek to make changes to the juvenile justice reform plan that passed the Assembly on a 95-0 vote.
She said the Senate would agree to close the troubled Lincoln Hills youth prison in Irma and re-purpose the facility. But she said the Senate wants to take a different approach and put more legislative oversight in place for juvenile corrections.
“We want these kids to go on a to a decent life, have a chance at change,” she said, adding the Senate also wants to address mental health treatment for troubled youth, and recidivism.
“It might have more oversight and we might give it more deliberation, but it will get done,” she said.
Darling also said the governor’s plan to give parents a $100 per child tax rebate would pass the Senate on Tuesday.
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