* The governor has been quite silent and the Republicans want to hear his thoughts…
Representative Elizabeth Hernandez
Chair, House Redistricting Committee
109 Capitol Building
Springfield, IL 62706
Senator Omar Aquino
Chair, Senate Redistricting Committee
627 Capitol Building
Springfield, IL 62706
Dear Chairs Hernandez and Aquino:
Comments from Members of the Democratic party during hearings on the 2021 redistricting process lead us to believe that the majority fully plans to enact new maps for both the Legislature and U.S. House of Representatives through a process that includes Governor Pritzker signing legislation by June 30, 2021.
To date, not a single House or Senate hearing has included testimony from the Governor or anyone representing his office.
We request the Governor, or a high-level member of his office, testify at our only scheduled joint House-Senate hearing on Monday, April 19, 2021, 5:00 p.m. in East St. Louis.
In March of 2018, then-candidate JB Pritzker said that without a constitutionally-implemented independent commission, “I would urge Democrats and Republicans to agree to an independent commission to handle creating a new legislative map”.
On January 30, 2020, Governor Pritzker stated “we should have compact, contiguous districts as best we can.” Additionally, the Governor added “I am going to veto any unfair map that gets presented to me.”
On January 5, 2021, the spokesperson for the Governor reiterated the position by saying the Governor “has been clear he will veto a partisan map.”
Given the Governor’s numerous stated positions in favor of fair mapping, as well as a commission process for redistricting, it is vital that both the people of Illinois and our Committees hear directly from the Governor in a public hearing as to his views and plans for redistricting.
We ask that you immediately invite and confirm the Governor’s presence at the April 19 hearing so plans can be made accordingly.
Senator Jason Barickman
Spokesman, Senate Redistricting Committee
Representative Tim Butler
Spokesman, House Redistricting Committee
Frankly, I wouldn’t mind seeing that, either. I’ve asked Pritzker’s office for comment.
*** UPDATE *** Jordan Abudayyeh…
As the Governor has said, he believes legislative maps should reflect Illinois’ gender, racial, and geographic diversity, along with preserving the Voting Rights Act decisions that help ensure racial and language minorities are fully represented in the electoral process.
* Meanwhile, I went over this topic with subscribers earlier today…
The statement below can be attributed to Sen. Omar Aquino, D-Chicago, Chair of the Senate Redistricting Committee, and Sen. Elgie Sims, D-Chicago, Vice Chair of the Senate Redistricting Committee:
“As Republicans nationwide seek to silence Black and Brown communities, Democrats in Illinois remain committed to the creation of a fair map that reflects the great diversity of our state. We have invited communities of interest across Illinois to participate in this process, including establishing an online portal that allows anyone to draw and submit their own proposed maps. Meanwhile, Republicans are presenting the public with a false choice by promoting legislation that is legally unsound. They know a bill cannot supersede the Illinois Constitution, which requires the General Assembly to undertake the redistricting process every ten years. Democrats are focused on inclusion, not legally questionable distractions.”
* Tom Kacich: Will Illinois Democrats opt for inferior data in map-making?
* Aurora hearing gives residents chance to speak out on redistricting
* Who Draws The Line? - Northern Illinois Residents Discuss Redistricting During Recent Hearing
* Elected officials, witnesses debate best ways to redraw legislative districts at CLC hearing