(MADISON) – On Tuesday, November 30, the Supreme Court of Wisconsin issued its opinions on the ongoing redistricting process. The conservative-majority Court effectively sided with the Wisconsin GOP to secure their gerrymander for another decade. Rep. Gary Hebl released the following statement in response:
The Court had a decision to make: stand for fair maps, or go along with the partisan GOP gerrymander. Sadly, they put ideology before democracy and sided with the GOP.
In an attempt to add legitimacy to their decision, the Court said it would prioritize a “least change” map, which has never been part of the criteria for drawing maps before in Wisconsin- that is, until Republicans used that phrasing to justify locking in their 2011 gerrymander and ultimately grant themselves a perpetual majority in the legislature.
Proponents of fair maps are not seeking a map that will ensure majorities for Democrats. Instead, we are asking that maps fairly represent the makeup of the people of Wisconsin, and be able to be responsive to shifting opinions throughout the state. That may mean a Republican majority some or even most of the time. But it does not guarantee a Republican majority and thus insulate the WI GOP from any accountability or need to listen to constituents.
Elected officials must be able to be held accountable to those that elected them. Rigged maps will ensure that Republicans are more beholden to their campaigns donors than the voters.
Tuesday’s decision was a defeat for democracy in Wisconsin.