November 6, 2017

City-County Council Approves Proposal Urging Redistricting Reform

Detail of the State House districts in Central Indiana.

Detail of the State House districts in Central Indiana.

The City-County Council Monday night passed a proposal that urges the Indiana General Assembly to support comprehensive redistricting reform.

It passed with a vote of 15-to-10.

The council lacks the ability to change redistricting laws, so the vote has no legal binding. But it works to show state legislators its intent to stop partisan gerrymandering – when politicians redraw district maps to garner more votes.

The proposal is also unspecific. It doesn’t say how lawmakers should reform the system.  A number of councilors cited this as the reason they voted against the proposal.

Democrat Councilman Blake Johnson voted for it. And he says given what power the council has to enact change, the proposal was as specific as it needed to be.

“Tonight we are trying to send a signal to the state, that as a city we recognize that these districts cannot belong to politicians any longer, that it’s a symptom of a much more dark way we do politics. We’ve got to find a way to fix it," Johnson says.

The chamber was packed during the council’s discussion, with a crowd largely in favor of passing the proposal.

Here's how each councilor voted:

Adamson (D): Y
Clay (D): Y
Coats (R): N
Cordi (R): N
Evans (D): Y
Fanning (R): Y
Gray (D): Y
Holliday (R): N
Jackson (D): Y
Johnson (D): Y
Kreider (R): N
Lewis (D): Y
Mascari (D): Y
McHenry (R): N
McQuillen (R): N
Miller (R): Y
Mowery (R): N
Oliver (D): Y
Osili (D): Y
Pfisterer (R): N
Ray (D): Y
Robinson (D): Y
Scales (R): Y
Simpson (D): N
Wesseler (R): N

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