* From CHANGE Illinois…
As of last night’s survey deadline, the majority of candidates for Governor, including Democratic frontrunners: J.B. Pritzker, Daniel Biss, and Chris Kennedy, submitted responses to the Illinois Redistricting Collaborative’s 18-question gerrymandering survey.
Organizations involved in the crafting of the survey included: CHANGE Illinois, Asian Americans Advancing Justice – Chicago, the Better Government Association, Business and Professional People for the Public Interest, Citizen Advocacy Center, Common Cause Illinois, League of Women Voters Illinois, NAACP Chicago – South Side Branch, the Small Business Advocacy Council, and the Chicago Chapter of the Centrist Project.
The survey asked candidates specific questions about gerrymandering such as if they would support creating an independent redistricting commission to take over the map-making process, if they would actively advocate for a constitutional amendment to be passed by the Illinois General Assembly and sent to the voters, and supporting key changes to the process to increase transparency and public participation.
You can find each gubernatorial candidate’s response to the survey posted at: www.changeil.org/2018survey.
The winner of the 2018 governor’s race will play a major role in the next redistricting process in 2021. That governor will be responsible for approving or vetoing the maps.
“Getting them on the record in support of fair maps – an issue that 72 percent of Illinois voters support – was the easy part,” said John Sirek, Interim Executive Director of CHANGE Illinois. “Now, we need to keep the issue of gerrymandering front and center in their campaigns and beyond. If elected Governor, how will they see to it that Illinois enacts meaningful redistricting reform ahead of the next map-drawing process?”
Members of the Illinois Redistricting Collaborative are currently drafting a legislative constitutional amendment and have begun reaching out to allies in the Illinois General Assembly. The collaborative also plans to send a similar gerrymandering survey to members and candidates for the General Assembly in the coming weeks.
Last October, a Paul Simon Institute poll showed overwhelming support in Illinois for redistricting reform - with 72 percent of Illinoisans supporting an independent commission to draw Illinois’ district lines.
If you click here, you’ll see that neither Republican candidate and none of the Libertarian Party candidates sent a response by the deadline. Only the Democrats (except for Tio Hardiman).
Why no mention of this?…
As a non-partisan organization, we want to be able to work with the candidates of both parties on this issue and didn’t want appear one-sided just based on who answered and who didn’t. And thus, thought that it was unnecessary for us to call them out on their non-response to the survey, when you would have figured it out and will ask their campaigns anyway.
Anyway, click here and take a look at the responses. Your thoughts?