Tuesday, May 24, 2011

Packed Room for Lisa Handley at Redistricting Board

The 10am session went to 1:30. The room had the most people I've ever seen here.  By the time things started, all the chairs were full.

I'll do a quick overview and then try to fill in more in follow up posts.

1. Voting Rights Act Consultant Lisa Handley gave a two part presentation.

Board Member McConnochie (l) talking to Dr. Handley at break

2.  Presentation of Modified plans by
  • The Rights Coalition  (The Democratic and others plan)
  • AFFER (Alaskans for Fair and Equitable Redistricting - the Republican Party and others - such as Calista - plan)
  • Calista Plan
  • AFFR (Alaskans for Fair Redistricting - Unions and Native Corporations)
The Rights and AFFR both presented plans which they claimed met the benchmark requirements for nine effective or influence districts.  (Actually, Handley changed the terminology from what has been used and now calls 'influence' 'equal opportunity.')

I frankly had a hard time tracking the actual plan presented by AFFER.   The most interesting - because it offered a perspective not heard by the board in public before - came from attorney Marcia Davis who presented the Calista plan.  She argued that the board need not focus so closely on pleasing the Department of Justice because in some cases the DOJ has told people (she specifically talked about Georgia) to make changes in their plans and then the Supreme Court shot down the DOJ supported plan. 

The meeting will readjourn at 3pm.  The Native Caucus presentation is yet to be made.  You can listen online here.   Even if a lot of it doesn't make sense, Alaskans should at least try five minutes to get a sense of the issues they are wrestling. 

1 comment:

  1. Thanks for keeping on this issue, it affects us all yet generally does not stir interest.


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