LINCOLN, Neb. – September 21, 2020. A coalition of non-profit groups in Nebraska launches the Census & Redistricting Week of Action today, part of a campaign to raise awareness and educate the public about Census 2020, and how its data is used to draw voting maps that affect us for an entire decade.
Last month the Trump administration decided to halt the census one month early on September 30. To protect the voting map drawing process, the coalition is urging everyone to go to 2020census.gov to be counted. Then ask your family and friends to do the same before the deadline. An accurate count of Nebraskans means not only is funding sent where it’s needed, but that voting districts reflect their communities.
Common Cause believes it’s an inherent conflict of interest for politicians to draw their own voting maps. Instead of people choosing their politicians, politicians are choosing their voters. This is called gerrymandering and can be used for partisan or racial advantage by cracking or packing communities to dilute political power, or to keep an incumbent or political party in power.
Nebraska’s neighbors Colorado, Idaho and Iowa all benefit from redistricting laws that distance legislators from the map drawing process. So far 17 states have adopted non-partisan or bipartisan independent redistricting commissions to end gerrymandering.
Population data from the decennial census is used in the redistricting process to redraw state legislative and U.S. congressional districts. The federal government also uses the census data to allocate billions of dollars in funding for schools, roads and firetrucks. Redistricting new voting maps will affect Americans for the next decade.
Starting today Monday September 21 through Friday September 25, the coalition will host a series of online events to educate voters on the legislature’s role in selecting a nine-senator commission to redraw voting districts. The coalition is advocating for improved transparency and public engagement with the politician-led redistricting process.
CENSUS & REDISTRICTING WEEK OF ACTION
Monday September 21, 2020 – Friday September 25, 2020
Follow Common Cause Nebraska’s Facebook page for livestream guests, social media engagement, happy hours, and other scheduled daily activities.
Monday, September 21, 2020
Social Media Theme: What is Redistricting and Why Does It Matter
(League of Women Voters’ website, Brennan Center and other coalition groups)
Tuesday, September 22, 2020
Facebook Live with a Redistricting Expert at TBD: “Redistricting and Gerrymandering From A National Perspective”
Wednesday, September 23, 2020
Social Media Theme: How Redistricting Works in Nebraska- Social Media and information on the current Redistricting Process
Thursday, September 24, 2020
Social Media Theme: Video Day
Friday, September 25, 2020
Social Media Theme: Follow Friday – Highlighting our coalition member organizations and how redistricting affects the work they do
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The redistricting coalition group includes Common Cause Nebraska, Nebraska Appleseed, ACLU Nebraska, League of Women Voters, NAACP Lincoln, Civic Nebraska, Farmers Union, Nebraskans for Peace, Anti-Defamation League, Nebraska Civic Engagement Table, United in Action, Represent Us Omaha.
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