Every 10 years, it’s the same thing. The people in power attempt to draw district line so that they stay in power.
Lawsuits are filed. Money is wasted. Dates slip by. Elections can be delayed. Confusion & chaos reign.
But it doesn’t have to be this way.
Dwell on that. South Carolina is the ONLY state in the country that has ZERO laws on the books that govern this process! And the can keeps getting kicked down the road every decade to address this problem.
In 20201, SC Senator Mike Fanning and Representative Gilda Cobb-Hunter introduced the FAIR Act (Fairness, Accountability, and Integrity in Redistricting) to their respective chambers. It never made it out of committee.
What was in this proposed legislation? You can read it for yourself.
- Codify a number of best practices already used by the redistricting committees (which they could do away with at any time since its not the law). This includes setting districts of equal population, respect geographic and cultural boundaries, and define communities of interest.
- Establish a bipartisan independent citizens commission to oversee the process.
- Prohibit dispersing or concentrating minority population in a manner that prevents minorities from electing their candidates of choice
It’s argued that the current process is fine and aside from being independent already does most of the things found in the FAIR Act. So why not put that into LAW? So much energy was put into supposedly making elections more “fair”. So let’s start it at the beginning and make sure that the maps themselves are drawn FAIRly!
I support the FAIR Act and will fight for it when reintroduced in the next legislative session.