Grassroots group calls for redistricting reform

Feb 27, 2017
Originally published on February 28, 2017 8:36 am

A citizens group wants to change how political boundaries are drawn in Michigan. Right now, the Legislature draws new lines for legislative and congressional districts every 10 years following the Census.

John Hanieski is an economist who says, right now, the numbers don’t add up. He says the state is evenly divided between Republicans and Democrats. But he says the GOP wins a lot more seats. 

He says the current system allows lawmakers to put their interests ahead of their constituents.

“I think that is just fundamentally wrong when you violate a moral obligation in order to serve your own selfish interest rather than the interests of the people you’ve been elected to serve.”

The group Voters Not Politicians will host town halls through March and spend April drafting an amendment to the state constitution to create an independent redistricting commission.

“We have a system that fundamentally is flawed, said Katie Fahey with the Voters Not Politicians campaign. “We have people who have something to gain from manipulating the way our congressional districts are drawn, and we don’t have a transparent process that reflects what the people of Michigan want.”

Fahey says the group will host town halls through March and spend April drafting an amendment to the state constitution to create an independent redistricting commission. The goal is to get a question on the 2018 ballot. 

                        

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