Jimenez on Democratic-drawn maps: ‘A bunch of colors, a bunch of shapes, but no real markers’ – Froylan Jimenez says the website where Democrats uploaded their proposed legislative maps does nothing to answer any of the many questions in the fair maps debate.
“Just a few seconds ago prior to coming on, I checked that website and clicked under the maps that were released and what I saw was a bunch of colors, a bunch of shapes, but no real markers,” said Jimenez during a public hearing on redistricting.
The once-every-decade task of map redistricting has become a burning issue in Springfield as Democrats, already in control, seek to maintain the status quo while Republicans argue for a fairer process, especially since Census Bureau data traditionally relied on as part of the process is not expected to be available before a June 30 deadline.
As is, the task of redrawing maps typically falls to the party in charge. If the remapping task isn’t complete by the deadline, the responsibility is handed to an independent remapping commission that consists of four Republicans and four Democrats.
All across the state, minority groups are also calling for a process that would offer a truer reflection of their communities.
“Every voice is important,” Illinois State Conference NAACP President Teresa Haley said during a recent Redistricting Committee public hearing. “The NAACP is opposed to so many things, such as packing and stacking and cracking, and we’ve seen it over and over again.”
Packing, stacking and cracking are all terms that signal ways to dilute the voting power of minority groups to the benefit of a political party.
As the debate intensifies, Republican lawmakers are calling on Gov. J.B. Pritzker to honor the pledge he made as a gubernatorial candidate when he vowed to veto any map drawn by politicians.
The governor has recently sought to distance himself from those comments and a spokesperson for newly elected House Speaker Emmanuel Welch said that the speaker “has every intention” of meeting the June 30 deadline.
Jimenez on Democratic-drawn maps: ‘A bunch of colors, a bunch of shapes, but no real markers’