NYPIRG have been in full discussion and support of having a more equal, as well as a competitive race for the seats in Congress by redistricting commission in New York State. The supporters of this reform believe that many politicians rig the system by setting their own party lines within a district. Because of this it doesn’t fairly represent the communities that dwell in this district.
Of course the student runs organization not only supports this campaign, but many other causes such as hunger and homeless, environmental justice, and countless others. However one of their main objectives for this semester has been their government reform campaign. Because of the timeliness of the upcoming election, it just worked well for this sort of campaign to be discussed.
Friday morning, Kevin Stump, campus project coordinator at Purchase College, is new here, was explaining the redistricting reform.
Every ten years the country fills out the census, and then the state is responsible for redrawing district lines. Traditionally, the Senate has been Democratic and the House has been Republican, and each group is responsible for drawing their own party lines. Whatever party is the majority within a certain district they will be the ones to give favor to their party when it comes down to redrawing these lines out.
“NYPIRG’s position on this is to advocate for fair and competitive elections that are equal” said Stump. Besides the U.S Senate where it has to be two representatives from each state, Stump argues that all of the other elective officials in each district should be equal, yet they are not.
One of the big questions is how do people choose who has the authority to make these decisions? NYPIRG advocates the qualifications to do this job is to have an enrollment of diversity within the officials. The model NYPIRG is trying to follow that twenty-one states have redistricting commission. They are called “Independent Commission” we he explains “really regulates the redistricting process”.
There has been some hope, two of the candidates, Tom Roach and Rob Castelli, running for the 89th assembly seat agree with what NYPIRG are trying to achieve. However Stump feels indifferent about the support by saying, “But however, what we need to do is to find the right people champion this because if nobody is willing to take the leadership role with this then it’s not going too happened. You can be support of something, but what are you going to do?”