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Arkansas attorney general again rejects bid to create panel to draw state's districts

By Hunter Field

This article was published April 21, 2018 at 4:30 a.m.

arkansas-attorney-general-leslie-rutledge-speaks-during-the-second-day-of-the-republican-national-convention-in-cleveland-tuesday-july-19-2016

Arkansas Attorney General Leslie Rutledge, speaks during the second day of the Republican National Convention in Cleveland, Tuesday, July 19, 2016.

Attorney General Leslie Rutledge on Thursday rejected, for the second time, the ballot title for a proposed constitutional amendment that would create an independent commission to draw Arkansas' legislative and congressional district boundaries.

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Print Headline: District-drawing bid rejected again by AG

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Comments on: Arkansas attorney general again rejects bid to create panel to draw state's districts

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Displaying 1 - 5 of 5 total comments

RBear says... April 21, 2018 at 7:48 a.m.

Keep trying, David Couch. This is an issue that Arkansas needs to help maintain fair elections and governing. While Arkansas doesn't have as many gerrymandered districts as Texas or North Carolina, any gerrymandered district is bad. This would apply to either party who sought to use their advantage in the legislature to skew elections to their favor and falsely represent the citizens of a district.
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From the state's redistricting site, the following points should be maintained in drawing districts.
- The Courts have held that geographically compact districts are ideal. For example, a district shaped like a circle or a square would be “geographically compact.” In practice, most districts have some irregularity in shape; nevertheless, the more bizarre the district shape, the less likely it is to be approved by the Courts.
- Preservation of communities of interest describes the goal of maintaining a group of people in a specific geographic area where those individuals share common interests, i.e., common economic, social, cultural, ethnic, religious or even political interests.
- With respect to partisan gerrymanders, the United States Supreme Court has indicated that it is possible to bring a lawsuit regarding partisan gerrymanders; however, the Supreme Court has not identified what is or is not legal with respect to partisan gerrymanders. As a result, there is a great deal of uncertainty about partisan gerrymanders and, as such, they should be minimized.
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Currently, the commission is extremely partisan, made up of the governor, the secretary of state, and the attorney general. Couch's ballot proposal would offer a more balanced look at redistricting.

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KnuckleBall says... April 21, 2018 at 8:30 a.m.

She is not rejecting this for any other reason than politics. She is a JOKE as AG.

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BOLTAR says... April 21, 2018 at 8:36 a.m.

Gerrymandering is arguably the primary reason for our dysfunctional, polarized, unresponsive government and polity.

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23cal says... April 21, 2018 at 11:04 a.m.

Gerrymandering needs to be addressed and fixed on a nationwide basis, along with campaign finance reform. A lot of problems would be solved and the electorate would be better served.

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sjmays says... April 21, 2018 at 4:06 p.m.

Don't hold your breath.

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