Ill. Republicans propose redistricting map | St. Louis Public Radio

Ill. Republicans propose redistricting map

May 26, 2011

Updated at 3:52 - Replaced story from the Associated Press with story from Illinois Public Radio.

Reporting from Illinois Public Radio's Luke Runyon was used in this report.

Republicans at the Illinois statehouse Thursday countered new legislative boundaries drawn by the ruling Democrats. The GOP touts its map as far superior, but at this point it may be moot.

(Via the link above you can search for your specific address and view demographic information within an interactive map)

They're calling it the "fair map." And Republicans say their Democratic colleagues have produced a map that is anything but.

When piecing it together Republicans say they left out the addresses of incumbents, and say they never factored in the partisan makeup of the new districts.

Mattoon Republican Senator Dale Righter says his party's map goes even further when it comes to protecting minority voting rights.

He says the Democratic map runs contrary to state and federal laws and doesn't ensure ethnic communities are fully represented.

"The Democrat map does it where it's convenient and where they can make sure that they protect their incumbents," Righter said. "And that's the wrong approach and the unconstitutional approach."

Righter says he has "measured optimism" that the Democrats in power will heed the Republican's plan.
Though, they have little reason to listen to GOP demands.

Democrats have majorities in both the House and Senate -  enough to pass a map without any input from across the aisle.

Democrats say their map is a balance among competing minority interests, but don't deny party politics were at play.