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Freddie Stubbs Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Wed Jan-26-05 12:49 PM
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Schwarzenegger, Mehlman go head to head over reform
By Peter Savodnik

Republican Chairman Ken Mehlman and California Gov. Arnold Schwarzenegger (R) look to be locked in battle over the future of redistricting in the Golden State, with Mehlman pushing the status quo and the governor calling for an overhaul of the system.

If nothing changes, Republicans are almost certain to hold on to their 20 of 53 seats in the states congressional delegation. If the process is depoliticized, as supporters put it, by taking redistricting out of the hands of politicians and handing it over to a panel of former judges, the GOP could pick up as many as six seats, some Republicans say.

The split between Mehlman, who ran President Bushs reelection campaign, and Schwarzenegger comes three months after the movie star-turned-politician made a last-minute trip to the battleground state of Ohio on the presidents behalf.

Before Nov. 2, 2004, Schwarzenegger had not taken a position on redistricting reform, a process that would affect both congressional and state legislative districts. During the campaign, the governor actively stumped for Republicans in seven state legislative districts; none of those Republicans won. Earlier this year, the governor came out in favor of reform.

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realFedUp Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Wed Jan-26-05 01:08 PM
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1. Amazingly Garry South, Davis's campaign manager, wants re-districting
says what do Dems have to be afraid of.

More sexual harrassers on steroids with
large egos and thin skins getting into office?
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fob Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Wed Jan-26-05 01:18 PM
Response to Reply #1
2. Do you have a link for that? From what I've read about him, Garry is
a pretty savvy guy. I would think if he is saying, "What's the big deal?", then maybe the Dems can take out a few more pukes.
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realFedUp Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Wed Jan-26-05 04:18 PM
Response to Reply #2
3. column in LA Times opinion section today

Taking 'Modern Art' Out of California's Political Map

By Garry South
Garry South is a Democratic strategist who managed Gray Davis' two campaigns for governor.

January 26, 2005

Remember when our grade school crossing guards used to say, "The lines are your friends"? Well, that could also apply to members of the Legislature and the California congressional delegation.

After every decennial census, the Legislature is required to redraw the boundaries of all legislative and congressional districts to take population growth and shifts into account. In 2001, legislators on both side of the aisle conspired to rejigger district lines to remove even the semblance of competitiveness, making the overwhelming majority of seats slam-dunks for either Democrats or Republicans. To understand the process, think of two retail giants illegally colluding to divvy up sales territory, thereby awarding themselves geographical monopolies.


But history shows that we Democrats have nothing to fear from fairly drawn legislative and congressional districts. We tend to put up better candidates, run better campaigns and raise more money than Republicans and advocate positions on major issues that are more in line with those of California voters.


Does it take a rocket scientist or even, for that matter, a political scientist to figure out that we Democrats can compete and prevail without rigging the rules and creating noncompetitive monopolies?

In truth, a nonpartisan redrawing of district lines may favor Democrats in some cases and Republicans in others. What's important is that a fair redistricting would benefit the voters of California.
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