Thursday, February 23, 2012

Journal Sentinel Offering Solid Coverage Of The Redistricting Trial

The Journal Sentinel's Patrick Marley is closely following the case. I hope the paper's new pay wall does not keep you from reading the details. Here is a tidbit from the story that gets updated as things move on:

Redistricting 'radically reconfigured' districts, expert testifies

Republican legislators moved 18 times as many voters as necessary in Latino areas, UW-Madison political scientist says

In drawing Assembly districts in Milwaukee's Latino neighborhoods, Republican lawmakers moved 18 times as many voters as necessary, according to court testimony Thursday.

The new batch of voters in the 8th Assembly District "would simply overwhelm the voting power of the Latino community and severely diminish their ability to elect the candidate of their choice," testified Ken Mayer, a University of Wisconsin-Madison political scientist.

To set the right population levels in the district on Milwaukee's near south side, lawmakers needed to add about 2,800 people. Instead, Republicans pulled almost 23,000 people out of the district and added about 25,600 people to it.

The result: Almost half of the people who used to be in the district no longer are, Mayer said. Similar shifts occurred in the neighboring 9th Assembly District.

"They were both in my view radically reconfigured," Mayer testified.

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