Republican lawmakers propose new legislation to change how redistricting maps are drawn

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CENTRAL ILLINOIS (WMBD) — House and Senate Republicans proposed new legislation on Tuesday, March 30, to change how redistricting maps are drawn.

Republican leaders said the People’s Independent Map Act creates a more fair system for drawing the lines. They said it removes politicians from the process and represents everyone in Illinois.

“This may be the most important decision we make,” said House Republican Leader Jim Durkin.

The act creates a commission appointed by the Illinois Supreme Court to draw redistricting maps.

“Every Illinoisian deserves to [be] represented in our democracy and an independent map drawn by the people, for the people, and not by politicians for politicians, is really the best way for people to have their voices heard,” said Senate Republican Leader Dan McConchie.

State Senator Jason Barickman (R-Bloomington) said it’s something Governor J.B. Pritkzer and other lawmakers have supported before.

“Numerous democrats put their name behind legislation that is identical to what we’re proposing here,” said Barickman.

In a statement on Tuesday, Senate Democrats said they’re working on district maps that reflect everyone in the state.

Barickman said the proposed legislation brings more transparency to the process.

“Millions of illinoisians believe that politicians should not draw their maps. Politicians should not pick their own voters,” said Barickman.

Republican leaders said it also holds lawmakers accountable.

“It shows that people have trust in government if they know that the maps aren’t being drawn behind closed doors,” said Tim Butler (R – Springfield).

Senate Democrats also said in the statement, “It’s difficult to believe republicans are so worried about ensuring everyone is fairly represented after they spent last four years supporting president trump’s efforts to purposefully undercount minority communities.”

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