Iowa political-boundary map process could turn really political despite nonpartisan reputation

Local News

Potential rejection of looming second proposal sets stage for lawmakers to draw maps if there's a third draft

Democrats on Capitol Hill struggle to unify around their $3.5 trillion spending plan for climate and social programs.

Republicans in Illinois push their own crime bill that’s a far cry from the direction Democrats in the state are taking. Republicans in Iowa say no to a nonpartisan proposal for new political boundaries.

We’ll get to all of with Scott County Republican Party Vice Chair Rob Edel and former Rock Island Mayor Mark Schwiebert, a Democrat.

Republicans in control of the state legislature asserted their dominance when state senators rejected the political maps during a special session this week. They voted 32 to 18 against the maps strictly along party lines.

Now the nonpartisan Legislative Services Agency that created the maps has about a month to submit a second proposal for congressional and state legislative districts.

Then there’s a possible third draft if that second proposal gets rejected. That third draft could then be treated like any other bill, subject to amendments, essentially giving Republicans the power to draw the lines however they see fit.

What’s the point of having a nonpartisan commission draw maps if they won’t be accepted?

“In Iowa, up until now, they have set an example other states can emulate, which is to draw maps on a nonpartisan basis,” Schwiebert said.

“The first proposed map included several districts with significant irregularities in their boundaries,” Edel said. “I don’t see this as a partisan decision.”

Hear what our panel has to say in the video.

This bring us to our question of the week: What do you think about Iowa state lawmakers rejecting the political maps submitted by the nonpartisan Legislative Services Agency?

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