SB 22

Independent Citizens Commission for Redistricting

The Pennsylvania Senate Democrats voted unanimously against a Senator Aument amendment to create judicial districts, as part of the redistricting reform bill, Senate Bill 22.

Ultimately, the amendment passed by a partisan vote of 31 to 18, with several Republicans voting against it as well.

Senate Bill 22 was intended to create an independent commission for the redistricting process, to prevent gerrymandering and ensure fair, competitive elections. The irony and hypocrisy of the amendment from Senator Aument is that its purpose is to gerrymander the court system. It would create commission-drawn districts for judges – instead of statewide elections, as they are now.

News on SB 22

Republicans move to remake court after gerrymandering case

Associated Press | By Marc Levy

After the Pennsylvania Supreme Court’s Democratic majority threw out the Republican-drawn map of congressional districts as an unconstitutional gerrymander, Republicans raised talk of impeaching Democratic justices.

Calls for impeachment even came from senior Republican Party officials.

That talk receded, but Republicans have brought forward another plan that could limit the lifespan of the court’s Democratic majority: changing the state’s constitution to elect appellate court judges in districts, rather than in statewide elections.

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Pennsylvania Senate double-cross

The Morning Call | By Bill White

My Sunday column will look at the discouraging latest developments in the effort to reform the way election districts are drawn up in Pennsylvania.

In short, Senate Republicans double-crossed everyone at the last minute by amending Senate Bill 22 — which would create an independent citizens redistricting commission — so it includes a provision calling for regional elections of state appellate court judges.

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Editorial: Bipartisanship cast aside in redistricting effort

The Reading Eagle | Associated Press

It’s hard to stomach the twists and turns in the effort to change the way Pennsylvania’s congressional and state legislative districts are drawn. The latest development, a last-minute Republican amendment calling for a change in the way state appellate court judges are elected, angered Democrats and led many of redistricting reform’s staunchest advocates to drop their support of legislation they had championed.

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Philadelphia Tribune: Senate passes controversial plan

By Stacy M. Brown | Philadelphia Tribune

Philadelphia-area state Sens. Anthony Williams and Vincent Hughes led a chorus of Democrats expressing outrage this week over the Republican-led Senate’s redistricting overhaul, which would include Supreme, Superior and Commonwealth court districts.

Under the bill, which House members were expected to receive Wednesday, state appellate judges would be elected by district, rather than statewide, and a citizens commission would draw the state’s congressional and legislative districts

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Our Members at Work

State Senate Passes Sen. Boscola’s Redistricting Bill

Harrisburg, June 13, 2018 – The state Senate today voted 35-14 in favor of Sen. Lisa M. Boscola’s (D-Northampton/Lehigh) statewide redistricting reform legislation. The measure would amend the state’s constitution to establish a citizen’s commission to redraw...

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Leach Comments on Passage of Senate Redistricting Reform Bill

HARRISBURG – June 13, 2018 − State Senator Daylin Leach (D-Montgomery/Delaware) today commented on the passage of Senate Bill 22 by the Pennsylvania Senate. The proposed constitutional amendment now awaits consideration by the Pennsylvania House of Representatives....

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