PEORIA, Ill. (WMBD) – Wednesday, leaders with the non-profit organization Common Cause showed their support for the federal Freedom to Vote Act.
Leaders of Common Cause said the bill would help protect voter rights.
The Freedom to Vote Act includes language on voter registration, election integrity, and gerrymandering.
If passed, states would have to meet specific criteria for congressional redistricting and federal action could be taken if states don’t comply.
The Executive Director of Common Cause Illinois, Jay Young, said the state’s current redistricting process must be improved.
“Very little public involvement in the process happens and lines are drawn that protect the incumbents that are in office, but do little to guarantee that communities of interest are being respected. Fortunately, that doesn’t have to be Illinois’ future,” Young said.
Young said it’s also important that communities are motivated to discuss redistricting earlier in the process.
“This can’t happen behind closed doors. This can’t happen in the dark. We need to start motivating communities to be talking about this in years that end in a two and a three, and not years ending in an eight or a nine,” Young said.
Young said he expects the Freedom to Vote Act to be passed. He said Illinois must start getting prepared for changes.