PROPOSAL 2 PASSED!
The League of Women Voters of Michigan supported Proposal 2, which will create an Independent Redistricting Commission. This constitutional amendment will establish an impartial commission of voters (not politicians) who will be charged with creating new district maps for state and congressional offices that cannot favor one party or candidate. This commission will operate in a completely transparent manner and will create maps based on fair criteria. Currently, politicians draw their own voting maps, and have the power to hand-pick their voters. Gerrymandering benefits politicians, and hurts the rest of us, regardless of our political preferences. When politicians choose their voters, our votes don’t matter and our voices aren’t heard. The League urged a YES vote on Proposal 2 so that voters can choose their politicians. For for more information, visit votersnotpoliticans.com
TRIAL PORTION OF LWVMI’S FEDERAL LAWSUIT AGAINST GERRYMANDERING IS COMPLETE
On November 29, 2018, a 3-judge panel ruled to allow a federal lawsuit filed by the League of Women Voters of Michigan and 11 individual voters in December 2017 against the State of Michigan to go forward. The lawsuit aims to to end unfair, partisan gerrymandering of Michigan’s Congressional, state senate and state house districts. The suit has survived attempts for dismissal by lawyers for Michigan Secretary of State Ruth Johnson. “Emails that the mapmakers exchanged illustrate the profound extent to which partisan political considerations played into their redistricting efforts,” the judges wrote in their November 29th decision. The judges added that the “efforts proved extremely successful,” allowing Republicans to win a “majority of seats” in Congress the next three elections “despite never winning more than 50.5% of the statewide vote.” Click here to read the November 30, 2018 Bridge Magazine article. Click here to read the original Complaint.
When the lawsuit was filed, LWVMI President Judy Karandjeff said, “The Michigan League of Women Voters today filed a federal lawsuit on behalf of voters throughout Michigan to end the practice of unfair, partisan gerrymandering. Michigan’s State House, Senate and Congressional districts are among the worst in the nation when it comes to partisan gerrymandering, and today’s lawsuit aims to fix the problem and restore voters’ rights to choose who best represents them.” “Ending partisan gerrymandering is critical to preserve our democracy and ensure every vote counts,” said Sue Smith, director of the League’s Redistricting Program.”
The lawsuit asks the federal court to declare the current districts to be unconstitutional partisan gerrymanders and to ensure that the districts are redrawn in a fair fashion. The lawsuit portion of the trial was completed on February 14, 2019, and we now await the judges’ decision. Click here to read the February 23, 2019 article in Bridge Magazine concerning the final documents that were turned over to the 3-judge panel.