HB 332---Tomorrow morning in House Voters and Elections, a bill introduced by chair Mary Helen Garcia will be heard. HB 332 would create a redistricting commission with 18 members, all sitting legislators apointed by the leadership of the two chambers. It provides for the legislators to meet during the interrim and create plans which would then be approved during a special legislative session.
This is exactly the approach that we at Voting Matters have been arguing against for a number of years. Essentially, it is an incumbent protection plan that allows individual legislators and the major parties to preserve the stauts quo- the legislators on the commission will even be appointed in proportion to the current partisan makeup of the two houses.
Cal Mary Helen Garcia's office at 986-4341 and ask her why she thinks this system is fair to voters of NM, and who on the commission will represent the interests of over 200,000 voters not affiliated with either major party?
HJR 21--- Representative Tom Anderson has introduced a joint memorial which would permanently establish a bipartisan commission made up of 8 members, 4 Republicans and 4 Democrats. The members would be appointed by legislative leaders but not necessarily be legislators themselves.
While this is an improvement, it still neglects the views of 20% of New Mexico voters.
We are still waiting for a bill that would create a truly independent commission.
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