[Vision2020] Sounds Like Gerrymandering

Tom Hansen thansen at moscow.com
Wed Jun 29 06:26:30 PDT 2011

Courtesy of today's (June 29, 2011) Moscow-Pullman Daily News with thanks to Rep. Shirley Ringo, who will be recognized for her commitment and service to the people of Latah County at a bench dedication ceremony on July 9th in East City Park.

Sounds like gerrymandering

The Idaho Legislature does not provide balanced representation. Nineteen percent of the 105 legislators are Democrats, and I would identify thirteen percent of the legislators as "moderate Republicans." The remaining 68 percent are, in my opinion, extremely conservative. This isn't sufficiently one-sided to satisfy Republican leadership. They will try to use redistricting to eliminate moderate Republicans and Democrats.

If the recent hearing in Moscow is an indication, the game plan involves combining more populous areas, such as Moscow and Lewiston, and separating them from the more rural parts of their counties.

Paula Bauer complained that "Whatever Moscow wants, Moscow gets." Gresham Bouma claimed that if rural Latah County remains with Moscow, "those residents representing mining, logging and agriculture would never have a say in the legislature."

Those comments do not remotely reflect the reality. An examination of decisions made in the Idaho Legislature will show that conservative interests are very well represented indeed. The progressives, such as many Moscow residents, get almost no consideration.

Combining Moscow and Lewiston into one district would certainly be nice for the conservative forces ... Trail, Ringo, Schmidt, Rusche, Stegner and Nesset would have to compete against each other in the next election. In other words, half of the Democrats or moderate Republicans from current districts 6 and 7 would be eliminated.

Use of a bipartisan committee should eliminate gerrymandering in drawing new district lines. The suggestion that we split up counties to give advantage to a certain population sounds like gerrymandering to me.

Best wishes for a more balanced Idaho Legislature.

Rep. Shirley Ringo, Moscow


Seeya round town, Moscow.

Tom Hansen
Moscow, Idaho

"The Pessimist complains about the wind, the Optimist expects it to change and the Realist adjusts his sails."

- Unknown

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