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Iowans hope non-partisan redistricting approach continues

Redistricting is underway in Iowa
Redistricting is underway in Iowa
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The Legislative Service's Agency is working on maps that redraw district lines in Iowa.

Redistricting is done every 10 years based on Census data. However, because the Census didn't come out on time the LSA is behind and will not finish before the September first deadline.

The LSA has said they will have it done by September 16th and three virtual hearings were scheduled by the Iowa Temporary Redistricting Advisory Commission for September 2oth, 21st, and 22nd. The Commission will than meet September 23rd to discuss the report they will present to the legislature.

Iowa's constitution states that if the maps are not approved and signed by the governor by September 15th the Supreme Court takes over the process. If this happens many are worried the redistricting process may become partisan.

House Minority Leader Jennifer Konfrst says, "It's really important for Iowan's to know that we have the gold standard when it comes to a redistricting process. Other states look to Iowa as how it can be done in a fair and impartial way."

Iowa's unique process is made up of a non-partisan group ensuring no one's political voice goes unheard. In other states this is not the case.

"You can corrupt the process so that certain parties are favored," says ACLU's Communications Director, Veronica Lorson Fowler.

Iowa's approach gets bi-partisan support from the Capitol and members hope that if the Supreme Court does take over, the process will continue to be non-partisan.

"My expectation would be they still work with the non-partisan Legislative Service's Agency, whose drawing maps and expects to have the first maps by September 16th," says Konfrst. "We expect they would just use those maps than and proceed."

Iowa Supreme Court issued a statement back in April regarding redistricting.

If the general assembly is not able to meet the constitutional deadline, the supreme court tentatively plans to meet its constitutional responsibility by implementing a process which permits, to the extent possible, the redistricting framework presently set forth in Iowa Code chapter 42 to proceed after September 15.

Now lawmakers are waiting to hear from the Iowa Supreme Court.

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