Friday, September 22, 2006

Fairness? No Way

Governor Huntsman drew up a 4 district map that he says is fair. He needs to be more specific. Fair to whom? This map is fair to everyone but the voters. All the Governor did is include Congressman Matheson in the standard incumbent protection program. If Governor Huntsman truly wants Utahns to be treated fairly, then he will give us as many competitive districts as possible. We deserve at least that much. His plan of four safe districts is not fair. It is gross, irresponsible governing that shields the powerful from having to honestly face the voting population.

13 Comments:

Anonymous Brett said...

Amen!

9/22/2006 04:18:00 PM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

Matheson and the Congessional Dems are demanding a safe seat in order to get a 4th seat. If they are willing to draw 4 competitive seats then I am sure Republicans will take that bet.

People don't realize that breaking up congressional districts into "competitive seats" in a state that is overwhelmingly Republican is next to improssible. President Bush received 71% of the vote in 04. What qualifies as a competitive district in this environment (4 seats with a 65-35% partisan breakdown). We can't pull in Las Vegas just to try and make Utah more competitive for the Democrats.

9/22/2006 09:09:00 PM  
Anonymous Todd said...

Neither Matheson nor the Congressional Dems have demanded any such thing. If you have evidence, put up or shut up.

And, the GOP is chicken to have fair districts drawn. If they weren't they would adopt an independent redistricting commission.

9/22/2006 09:47:00 PM  
Anonymous Todd said...

BTW, in 1992 when Clinton was pulling less than 25% in Utah, Democrats won two of the three congressional districts.

9/22/2006 11:33:00 PM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

Look, Matheson doesn't need any help. He is pulling in the highest approval ratings from our Utah Congressional delegation.

National Republican leadership needs to stand up and take their lumps for this failure, and Utah Republicans need to stop the horse and pony show.



I agree with Todd, why not adopt a independent redistricting commission.

9/23/2006 12:15:00 AM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

Todd, it is common reports out of Washington that national Democrats wanted to protect Matheson:

""Previously many Democrats had said that they were withholding support for the legislation because they were concerned about the potential ramifications for Mr. Matheson," said David Marin, staff director for the House Government Reform Committee. "Obviously, once Mr. Matheson is on board they can't make that claim." "

9/23/2006 05:05:00 PM  
Blogger Alienated Wannabe said...

Todd, I don’t have a problem with an independent redistricting commission. It sounds fine. However, we need to be realistic. No one is truly unbiased or independent. The title “independent” is really just window dressing.

To form such an organization, even numbers of Republicans and Democrats would need to be appointed. Is that fair given that Utah is overwhelmingly Republican? Is that fair to Libertarians, Greens, etc.? No, it isn’t. Please don’t believe that an independent commission is the panacea for all our districting problems.

Ethan is right, of course. The ideal would be to have four competitive districts. But, as has been eloquently pointed-out, anything resembling that would look very much like the embarrassing Republican gerrymandering that we went through last time. The fact is that Utah, by nature, is not that competitive.

In my opinion, it is wrong to draw a district with the intention of making it either competitive or non-competitive. Rather, the proper approach is to draw districts according to natural geographic boundaries and population centers. Then, let the chips fall where they may. Such an approach is organic and authentic.

Don’t try to either force or deny competition. Just live with the current reality.

Ethan is right in that the Governor bent over backwards to give the Democrats the exact opposite of what they received last time. He divided the Democrat leaning North Salt Lake County from the Republican leaning South Salt Lake County, and combined it with increasingly liberal Summit County. He should have kept Salt Lake County intact and then lived with the results.

In this case, it would have been a more competitive district, yet one the Democrats can still win if they field good candidates. The Mayor, District Attorney, and County Clerk are all Democrats, as are all three at-large members of the County Council. Some of these folks are descent, others are disappointing, but it proves that Democrats can consistently succeed within those natural boundaries.

9/23/2006 06:27:00 PM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

Wannabe--

Interesting thoughts, however, the ideal district size has to be around 558,000 people (4 district scenario) and SLCounty is far too large.

You can't draw 4 competitive districts in Utah and furthermore an independent commission is a total farce. Republicans should take an indenpendent commission because it would be a total disaster for the D's.

9/23/2006 10:00:00 PM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

Wannabe makes excellent points! Thank you.

9/24/2006 06:55:00 AM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

next thing you know you'll want to enact some over reaching federal legislkation from something stupid like the voting rights act...once we get the seat we should be free to draw our own districts.

9/25/2006 07:23:00 AM  
Blogger Alienated Wannabe said...

Thanks anonymous, I wasn't sure what the actually number was. You're right, Salt Lake County is far larger than the 558,000 figure.

9/26/2006 03:05:00 PM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

"Matheson and the Congessional Dems are demanding a safe seat in order to get a 4th seat."


I doubt demcrats are hardly in a position to demand anything in Utah.

9/28/2006 01:29:00 PM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

You all need help cuz your crazy little SOBs haha

10/11/2006 08:29:00 AM  

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