Proposed Missouri amendment to change procedure for redistricting

| October 19, 2018
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A ballot measure in November would address two separate issues in Missouri. Amendment 1, would amend campaign finance policy, but also change voting districts through altering the criteria for boundaries, and the individuals who draw maps.

Currently in Missouri, two commissions that are each respectively responsible for the state house and senate districts, may change district boundaries through a 70 percent vote. Each commission contains an equal number of Republicans and Democrats. The amendment would instead create a single new office called ‘state demographer’ who would be chosen from a list compiled by a single state official, the current auditor. Republican Saundra McDowell, running for the state auditor office against incumbent, Democrat Nicole Galloway, said the state auditor would have enormous influence in the selection of the “non-partisan demographer.”  The two existing commision must choose from the list provided by the auditor, or a lottery will be established to determine which person on the list will serve.

The demographer would redraw district maps to conform with criteria including partisan fairness and competitiveness. Opponents of the legislation posit that partisanship would necessarily be part of the process.

Auditor Galloway has spoken favorably about the proposed amendment, also citing the anti-corruption portion of the measure.

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Category: Local News, News, State News

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