Locke Foundation teams up with a bunch of libs. (Um, Yay.)

John Hood and Chris Fitzsimon don’t just team up on NC Spin.  They are also doing it more and more on state policy matters:


A coalition of policy and advocacy groups renewed their efforts to convince the General Assembly to set up an independent redistricting process based on a model adopted in Iowa as a means of ending partisan gerrymandering.

The Iowa redistricting model empowers the nonpartisan legislative staff to draw the congressional and legislative maps. It emphasizes compactness, and doesn’t allow the staff to take incumbency or partisanship into consideration.

The appeal to lawmakers came hours before the 2017 General Assembly was set to begin its long session, and it’s likely to face a skeptical reception.

Rep. David Lewis, R-Harnett, who chairs the House Rules Committee and co-chairs the House Elections Committee, attended the final portion of the press conference.

“I think a lot of the merits that are portrayed that the Iowa plan brings — reduce litigation, better product, more participation, more people running for office — frankly just don’t bear out,” Lewis said. “If you look at the number of unopposed seats in Iowa, the legislature, it was roughly comparable with what we had here.”

Backers of the plan argue that now is the best time to establish a nonpartisan process for redrawing congressional and legislative maps.

“Demographics have changed and no party knows exactly where those demographics are going to land in 2020 and after that,”said Rick Glazier, executive director of the liberal N.C. Justice Center and a former state representative. “The best time to do redistricting reform is always going to be when there are questions for either side.”

Mitch Kokai, senior political analyst at the John Locke Foundation, noted that redistricting has attracted recent headlines in North Carolina. On Tuesday, the U.S. Supreme Court issued a stay of a lower court’s order for the General Assembly to redraw legislative districts by March 15 and to hold elections under those new maps this fall.

“It is entirely consistent to argue that the maps for the 2012 elections and those drawn for the 2016 elections on the congressional side were legal and constitutional, but also bad,” Kokai said. “Just because the lawmakers can draw the districts the way they have doesn’t mean that they should.”

Lewis appeared not to be swayed by the coalition’s arguments. “I maintain that partisanship is a part of who each and every one of us are,” Lewis said. “So we can claim that we do not intend to exercise partisanship, but I think it’s more honest to say that partisanship is a part of who we are and will always be a part — not the sole, not the defining — requirement of redistricting or most anything else we do. But it will always be a part of what we do.”

Lewis said it’s “either naïve or disingenuous” to say that anything can truly be nonpartisan.

Other groups supporting the nonpartisan redistricting process include AARP North Carolina, NC Policy Watch, the League of Women Voters, Common Cause NC, the NC Sierra Club, the NC Conservation Network, NC Women United, and Democracy NC.

Let’s see.  We have The John Locke Foundation — purportedly the voice of North Carolina’s conservatives — teaming up with, count ’em. EIGHT left wing groups to move the redistricting process to a “non-partisan” independent commission.  That idea worked so well in California with its now practically non-existent state Republican Party.


10 thoughts on “Locke Foundation teams up with a bunch of libs. (Um, Yay.)

  1. Sometimes I wonder if John Hood is just an idiot or whether he is an actually 5th columnist infiltrator of the conservative movement.

    As to these phony ”independent” commissions, we should look to Arizona and California to see how the Democrats game them to make them partisan in their favor. Heck, the most egregious partisan redistricting done in California for decades, perhaps ever, was done by this ”independent” commission. They stacked things for the Democrats more than a partisan legislature would ever have dared.

    John Hood is a menace to the conservative movement in NC. He has lots of other dumb and destructive ideas, too, like getting rid of runoff primaries.

    As least, Civitas is not following the fool Hood down this stupid path.

  2. I have in the past thought that independent commissions would be appropriate. What changed my mind is seeing various “nonpartisan” elections like judicial and school board races turning out the way they do. Any time you see a nonpartisan race, that is where the demorat party has stealthily inserted all their radical candidates who would not be electable if people actually saw the D by their name.

    If this were ever implemented, then there would never be a set of maps drawn up that would not heavily favor the demorat party. They would insert their people in as “nonpartisans” into all the slots and then it would be over forever for Republicans.

    1. Well, I can see his reasoning. Trump is definitely not a Conservative. I am just baffled that Hood and others could not see the disaster that his opponent would be though. Although, that disaster will in part be a decrease of the power of the GOPe so it is somewhat understandable as Hood’s buddies are certainly a part of the “elite”.

  3. Until we’re allowed to stop taking race into consideration at all, you simply cannot “end partisan gerrymandering”. It’s built in, and no “independent” panel is (a) non-partisan, and (b) going to change that fundamental problem.

    Once we can create districts based on the basic rules we “should” be using, a computer could spit out reasonable maps easily, and this isnt a thing.

    1. Yes….but the computer programmers will probably be from California….so they would bury the partisan logic to help the dems deep in the code. There is really almost no way to get free of the tentacles of the demorat operatives.

  4. Never seen how a non-partisan panel would be determined. If it’s actions are mandated by a race conscious Federal government, there goes your non-partisanship. We could allow the legislature to re-district without regard to any societal division and minimum mutilation of our counties and tell the central government in DC to live with it. Naturally, we’d have to ignore a torrent of judicial activist judges. It can and should be done by every sovereign state.

    1. Yeah… my point was that the NC Constitution sets out only a few basic rules to create districts on.

      For both the Senate and the House, I “think” the rules are:
      1) Each district contains roughly the same number of people.
      2) Each district be a contiguous area.
      3) No dividing counties.

      The feds have ruled this is apparently horrible and a violation of the Voting Rights Act, so… now we have gerrymandered, unfair, partisan nonsense.

      I dont care how partisan you are… if those are the three rules you’re using, there’s not a lot of leeway for tipping the scales one way or the other. *shrug*

      And it would be a huge improvement over (a) the mess we have now every year, and (b) anything some “independent” panel can come up with. 🙂

  5. With so many good progressives among Republicans in North Carolina like progressive John Hood, it will make it easier to preserve President Obama’s agenda in your state. We need more progressives like John Hood.

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