Last Thursday, Common Cause in Wisconsin challenged candidates of all political parties to contact us if they support establishing a non-partisan redistricting process for Wisconsin to be in place for the next time redistricting occurs – in 2021. The reform, based on our neighboring state of Iowa's highly successful and respected 34-year-old redistricting process, would still give the Wisconsin Legislature the final say on the new district boundaries, but they would actually be drawn by the non-partisan Legislative Reference Bureau, without partisan political considerations. This would serve the best interests of citizens rather than those of the partisan legislative leaders, which is the case now. Legislators could vote up or down on the LRB-drawn maps, but without interference or amendment.
This reform, which was embodied in the 2013-2014 legislative session in Assembly Bill 185 and Senate Bill 163, was the most widely-supported and written-about political reform in Wisconsin over the past two years and had the editorial support of an unprecedented 19 Wisconsin daily newspapers.
Non-partisan redistricting reform is, and should be, an issue voters consider in the 2014 elections.
Thus far, 12 state legislative and statewide candidates have contacted us indicating their support for the "Iowa Plan." This is as much an exercise in seeing who is paying attention as it is in finding out who supports this common sense reform. Any candidate – including incumbent legislators running for re-election who may have been co-sponsors of AB 185 or SB 163 – must proactively contact us by email, by phone 608/256-2686 (leave a message if no answer) or by a simple sentence or two letter to CC/WI, P.O. Box 2597, Madison, WI 53701-2597.
As of today, here is the list of supporters.
We are making this listing available to all Wisconsin citizens and to the statewide media, and will be updating it as new supporters contact us.
So pay attention!