With the conclusion of the August partisan primary election in Wisconsin on August 9th, the nominees for the Wisconsin Assembly and State Senate have been determined for the upcoming November 8th general election. Democratic, Republican and Independent candidates for the Wisconsin Legislature will now make their case to the voters of Wisconsin about where they stand on important issues.
During the 2021-2022 Legislative Session, non-partisan redistricting reform was the leading political reform initiative in the media and among citizens throughout Wisconsin. Beginning in 2011, CC/WI has helped unite pro-reform legislators and citizens behind a single measure – Assembly Bill 395/Senate Bill 389 – that is modeled after Iowa’s highly successful, 42-year-old redistricting process that takes the partisan politics out of redistricting and delegates the boundary-drawing to a non-partisan state entity that does not utilize partisan political considerations in their task.
Last year, majority Republicans in the Wisconsin Legislature once again crafted partisan gerrymandered voting maps, just as they did in 2011 and the Wisconsin Supreme Court narrowly ruled to accept them in a 4 to 3 decision. So while state legislative districts have been decided for the upcoming November election and perhaps for some years to come, the matter of and need for redistricting reform has never been more urgent.
This issue has received the unprecedented endorsement of almost every Wisconsin daily newspaper editorial board over the years and tens of thousands of citizens have expressed their support for ending gerrymandering in letters to editors, communications to legislators and by attending one of numerous “reform forums” CC/WI and other organizations have organized over the last decade in every part of Wisconsin. While the legislative leadership continues to oppose this reform and refused to hold even a public hearing during the past legislative session, redistricting reform will very much be an issue during the current election season and in the upcoming 2023-24 legislative session.
As we have done during every state legislative election year since 2014, CC/WI wants to make it simple and easy for Wisconsin voters and media to be able to see which state legislative candidates support the non-partisan redistricting reform embodied in the “Iowa Plan” by providing a continually updated list of those candidates on our website.
Any statewide or state legislative candidate (or their authorized proxy) who supports the “Iowa Plan” and would like to see their name listed on our site should contact CC/WI by phone at (608) 256-2686 (leave a message if no answer), by email or, even by letter to: Common Cause in Wisconsin, P.O. Box 2597, Madison, WI 53701-2597. Citizens can urge candidates to support non-partisan redistricting reform and request that they get their names on this list.
Candidates must be pro-active to have their names appear on this site! Even incumbent legislators running for re-election who co-sponsored AB 395/SB 389 during the last legislative session and previously must contact us to be on the list. Why? Because it demonstrates that they are paying attention and continue to support this reform issue. And, because it’s important for candidates for public office to take the initiative to inform voters about where they stand on important issues like ending partisan gerrymandering in Wisconsin.
The list of candidates who inform us of their support for the Iowa Model redistricting plan for Wisconsin will be linked on a dedicated Common Cause Wisconsin webpage and updated regularly until the November 8th election. As a reminder, election clerks will mail out absentee ballots to voters requesting them beginning on September 22, 2022. Candidates should contact CC/WI before voters begin casting their absentee ballots so that voters know where Wisconsin Assembly and State Senate candidates stand on this important issue.
All Wisconsin Assembly and State Senate candidates that have filed for candidacy with the Wisconsin Elections Commission (and who have advanced beyond the August 9th partisan primary election) were contacted by CC/WI at their official campaign email address to inform them of the opportunity to indicate their support for redistricting reform.
Redistricting reform in Wisconsin is critical and necessary if we are ever to return to having a functional, less politically polarized state legislature that is responsive to the citizens of this state rather than to political bosses interested primarily in holding onto power. There is no question that an overwhelming majority of Wisconsinites want and support non-partisan redistricting reform. Now, let’s see which candidates of all political parties for the Wisconsin Legislature are willing to stand up and pledge support for it and for the voters of our state.
We will never give in on this issue. Help us to keep the pressure on for non-partisan redistricting reform.
Thanks, and all best,