File this in the category of “if at first you don’t succeed”: A new effort is underway to get redistricting on the ballot in Illinois.
The bipartisan group Independent Maps hopes to collect more than 300,000 signatures to get redistricting reforms on the ballot in 2016. Currently the political party in power gets to draw the legislative maps as they please, which means districts are drawn for the politicians’ benefit rather than the people’s. That’s why the 114th House District zigzags from downtown East St. Louis to Scott Air Force Base. This ballot measure would instead have geographic boundaries drawn in a nonpartisan, logical way.
Another group tried to get this issue on the ballot last year, but fell short of the number of signatures required. In addition, a judge ruled that the question’s wording violated the Illinois Constitution. Organizers say they will learn from those mistakes, and plan to raise more than $3 million to get the issue to the voters.
Metro-east residents frustrated with the lack of competitive legislative races, here’s your chance to get involved to help bring fair redistricting to Illinois.