Tucson Progressive

Pamela Powers Hannley, a progressive voice for Arizona

#AZGOP Lawsuit to Fight Independent Redistricting Costs Taxpayers $1.5 Mil

The voters of Arizona approved the creation on an independent redistricting commission to draw legislative and Congressional district boundaries in 2000. The citizen battle against gerrymandering was tied up in the courts for 10 years. Finally after the 2010 census, Arizona’s first Independent Redistricting Commission drew maps– instead of having the ruling party in the Arizona Legislature draw maps.

In the process of drawing the new maps, two Democrats, two Republicans, and one Independent worked long hours, held months of public meetings, and listened to hundreds of citizens. They came up with maps that perserved some safe districts for each party, plus some districts where the D/R registration was more or less even. Fairness for the people!

Unfortunately, the forces of gerrymandering and money didn’t like fairness for the people. The Arizona Legislature sued the Independent Redistricting Commission because they said the Constitution put the Legislatue in charge of redistricting.

In a stunning 5-4 Supreme Court defeat, Justice Ruth Bader Ginsberg said that the people of Arizona had spoken. “Arizona voters sought to  restore the core principle that the voters should choose their representatives, not the other way around,” wrote Ginsberg.

Now Arizona voters have learned that this judicial fiasco cost the taxpayers $1.5 million. WE paid for both sides of the court case! This court case was a political fight waged by the Arizona Republican Party, in a last ditch attempt to keep gerrymandering and thwart the rising new electorate, which includes far more Latinos and young voters– people who don’t support Republican candidates.

Read about the cost of the lawsuit here at AZCentral.

Unfortunately, the #AZGOP has a second redistricting lawsuit on it’s way to the Supreme Court. The 2015 case only dealt with Congressional districts. The new case covers Legislaive districts. I think Republican Legislators should foot the bill for these judicial shinnagans.

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About

The Tucson Progressive: Pamela Powers Hannley

I stand on the side of Love. I believe in kindness to all creatures on Earth and the inherent self-worth of all individuals--not just people who agree with me or look like me.

Widespread economic and social injustice prompted me to become a candidate for the Arizona House, representing Legislative District 9 in the 2016 election. My platform focuses on economic reforms to grow Arizona's economy, establish a state-based public bank, fix our infrastructure, fully fund public education, growlocal small businesses and community banks, and put people back to work at good-paying jobs. I also stand for equal rights, choice, and paycheck fairness for women. I am running as a progressive and running clean.

My day job is managing editor for the American Journal of Medicine, an academic medicine journal with a worldwide circulation. In addition, my husband and I co-direct Arizonans for a New Economy, Arizona's public banking initiative. I am a member of the national board of the Public Banking Institute, and I am co-chair of the Arizona Democratic Progressive Caucus, the largest caucus of the Arizona Democratic Party.

I am a published author, photographer, videographer, clay artist, mother, nana, and wife. I have a bachelor's degree in journalism from Ohio State University and a masters in public health from the University of Arizona. I grew up in Amherst, Ohio, but I have lived in Tucson, Arizona since 1981. I am a proud member of the Unitarian Universalist Church of Tucson and the Public Relations Society of America.

My Tucson Progressive blog and Facebook page feature large doses of liberal ideas, local, state, and national politics, and random bits of humor. I also blog at Blog for Arizona and the Huffington Post.

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