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Author Topic: US House Redistricting: Arizona  (Read 57855 times)
jimrtex
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« Reply #425 on: November 03, 2011, 12:38:30 pm »
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And what if the next chair doesn't obey the Republicans demands? Are they going to repeat the process over and over again until they find someone that will? This isn't going to stop, because the commission isn't going to draw the map they want, no matter who the chair is.

The problem for the GOP is that the commission is directed to create competitive districts. But the mix of 2008 and 2010 elections isn't particularly representative, and will tend to create slight Dem leans instead of even districts. Only if the commission is willing to adopt a better mix of elections will the GOP find them making better maps.

"To the extent practicable, competitive districts should be favored where to do so
would create no significant detriment to the other goals."

And the problem with creating competitive districts is that it also requires exacerbation of non-competitive districts.
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krazen1211
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« Reply #426 on: November 03, 2011, 12:58:41 pm »
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And what if the next chair doesn't obey the Republicans demands? Are they going to repeat the process over and over again until they find someone that will? This isn't going to stop, because the commission isn't going to draw the map they want, no matter who the chair is.

The problem for the GOP is that the commission is directed to create competitive districts. But the mix of 2008 and 2010 elections isn't particularly representative, and will tend to create slight Dem leans instead of even districts. Only if the commission is willing to adopt a better mix of elections will the GOP find them making better maps.

A competitive district can be created with all of that south bit of Phoenix, Tempe, Chandler, and east Mesa in accordance with the remaining criteria.
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« Reply #427 on: November 03, 2011, 01:14:42 pm »
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And what if the next chair doesn't obey the Republicans demands? Are they going to repeat the process over and over again until they find someone that will? This isn't going to stop, because the commission isn't going to draw the map they want, no matter who the chair is.

The problem for the GOP is that the commission is directed to create competitive districts. But the mix of 2008 and 2010 elections isn't particularly representative, and will tend to create slight Dem leans instead of even districts. Only if the commission is willing to adopt a better mix of elections will the GOP find them making better maps.

"To the extent practicable, competitive districts should be favored where to do so
would create no significant detriment to the other goals."



...which are listed in the Arizona Constitution that includes adherence to the VRA, respect for geographical, city and county lines, compactness, and others. In the proposed map, they aren't (except for the VRA.)

Quote

And the problem with creating competitive districts is that it also requires exacerbation of non-competitive districts.

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« Reply #428 on: November 03, 2011, 01:22:55 pm »
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"To the extent practicable, competitive districts should be favored where to do so
would create no significant detriment to the other goals
."
(emphasis added)

And that is the thing. Competitiveness is subordinated to the other parameters, which parameters were trashed by the commission to create "competitive" CD's using cooked data, so that they all list by a bit or a lot to the Dems in any event. So the Commission did a twin traducing of the law: ignoring subordination, and defining what is competitive in an ersatz way.
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« Reply #429 on: November 04, 2011, 12:34:30 pm »
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But Republicans (successfully, though on what seemed mighty feeble grounds - an indication of the state Supreme Court's leanings, I presume?) sued to have the shortlist changed (and then put someone they successfully got onto the shortlist that way onto the Commission.)

Which Commission?  It must be the redistricting commission, since you referred to someone on the shortlist being put on the "Commission." If the redistricting commission, I presume it was not Mathis that the Pubbies got on. But the shortlist is just for the 5th vote no?  I am just so confused. Smiley 

Oh no. There is a shortlist of 10 Democrats, 10 Republicans and 5 Independents. Not sure if parties are actually required to pick from their own subpool or it's merely understood, but anyways house and senate minority and majority leaders pick four commissioners, and then those four pick the fifth who's also the chair.

Quote
"To the extent practicable, competitive districts should be favored where to do so
would create no significant detriment to the other goals
."
(emphasis added)

And that is the thing. Competitiveness is subordinated to the other parameters.
That interpretation of the law was explicitly ruled to be false by the AZ SC in 2002 (or 1 or 3 or whatever), fwiw.

Anyways, I presume Mathis is removed for good now, the SC has agreed? IIRC "impeachment" (which implies an actual trial) is a misleading word, and it's actually a power of the Governor and 2/3 of the Senate to remove Commissioners (presumably written with the expectation that 2/3 of the Senate should be unachievable without really serious violations).
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« Reply #430 on: November 04, 2011, 12:47:50 pm »
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(After googling) Apparently the court has not ruled yet.

Worth pointing out that Brewer wanted to remove the two Democratic members as well... but failed to get 20 votes (from 21 Republican members) behind that... as here she didn't even offer the paltry wrongdoings of Mathis', but was quite clear she wanted them removed because they weren't drawing a Republican map. And, one may speculate, so the Commission would not have a quorum. Right now they can still hold meetings, public hearings, and even adopt their own compromise map.
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« Reply #431 on: November 04, 2011, 03:18:56 pm »
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But Republicans (successfully, though on what seemed mighty feeble grounds - an indication of the state Supreme Court's leanings, I presume?) sued to have the shortlist changed (and then put someone they successfully got onto the shortlist that way onto the Commission.)

Which Commission?  It must be the redistricting commission, since you referred to someone on the shortlist being put on the "Commission." If the redistricting commission, I presume it was not Mathis that the Pubbies got on. But the shortlist is just for the 5th vote no?  I am just so confused. Smiley 

Oh no. There is a shortlist of 10 Democrats, 10 Republicans and 5 Independents. Not sure if parties are actually required to pick from their own subpool or it's merely understood, but anyways house and senate minority and majority leaders pick four commissioners, and then those four pick the fifth who's also the chair.

Quote
"To the extent practicable, competitive districts should be favored where to do so
would create no significant detriment to the other goals
."
(emphasis added)

And that is the thing. Competitiveness is subordinated to the other parameters.
That interpretation of the law was explicitly ruled to be false by the AZ SC in 2002 (or 1 or 3 or whatever), fwiw.

Anyways, I presume Mathis is removed for good now, the SC has agreed? IIRC "impeachment" (which implies an actual trial) is a misleading word, and it's actually a power of the Governor and 2/3 of the Senate to remove Commissioners (presumably written with the expectation that 2/3 of the Senate should be unachievable without really serious violations).

The plain meaning of the text is subordination; if the AZ Supremes ruled otherwise, I cannot imagine the rationale. Impeachment is not a trial - it's a charge.
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« Reply #432 on: November 04, 2011, 03:19:24 pm »
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(After googling) Apparently the court has not ruled yet.

Worth pointing out that Brewer wanted to remove the two Democratic members as well... but failed to get 20 votes (from 21 Republican members) behind that... as here she didn't even offer the paltry wrongdoings of Mathis', but was quite clear she wanted them removed because they weren't drawing a Republican map. And, one may speculate, so the Commission would not have a quorum. Right now they can still hold meetings, public hearings, and even adopt their own compromise map.

The Democratic members, also, were parties to secret mapping sessions. That alone, was cause for impeachment.
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jimrtex
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« Reply #433 on: November 04, 2011, 10:07:52 pm »
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Quote
"To the extent practicable, competitive districts should be favored where to do so
would create no significant detriment to the other goals
."
(emphasis added)

And that is the thing. Competitiveness is subordinated to the other parameters.
That interpretation of the law was explicitly ruled to be false by the AZ SC in 2002 (or 1 or 3 or whatever), fwiw.

Anyways, I presume Mathis is removed for good now, the SC has agreed? IIRC "impeachment" (which implies an actual trial) is a misleading word, and it's actually a power of the Governor and 2/3 of the Senate to remove Commissioners (presumably written with the expectation that 2/3 of the Senate should be unachievable without really serious violations).

The plain meaning of the text is subordination; if the AZ Supremes ruled otherwise, I cannot imagine the rationale. Impeachment is not a trial - it's a charge.

http://www.azcourts.gov/Portals/23/pdf2009/AZMinorityvFairRedistrictingOpinion.pdf

Actually the decision was made in 2009 (the commission website says this was it was a (2005) case, but it is definitely with the 2009 opinions.  The justice who partially dissented said it wasn't worth drawing up a new plan for 2010.  The lawsuit was over the legislative plan, rather than congressional map.

The first plan the redistricting commission drew wasn't precleared (this is probably a weakness of non-legislative commissions, since they are more likely to roll over for minority groups, and minority groups are likely to lobby for minority members to be on the commission), so a federal court drew the plan for the 2002 election. 

And then after the commission drew a new map, they were sued for not drawing enough competitive districts.  A state district court ruled that they should have drawn more competitive districts (7 vs. 4 or 30 legislative districts (Arizona elects one senator and two representatives from each legislative district) because the plaintiffs had drawn a plan with 3 more competitive districts, which at least in the eye of the court adhered to the other goals.

The state appeals court slapped down the district court, and said that that competitiveness was subordinate to the other goals.  The district court persisted, the appeals court overturned them again, and that was what ended up in the Supreme Court.

The Supreme Court most importantly said that the redistricting commission is equivalent to a legislative body, and that courts should judge the plans on the commission having a reasonable basis for their decisions.  Instead of the plaintiffs proving they could produce a "better" plan, they had to prove that the commission had not acted reasonably in producing their plan.

And the Supreme Court agreed that if any goals had to give, it was competitiveness.  But what they also said was that commission after they drew the grid plan, that they should have considered all goals in coming up with their next plan.  Instead the commission had drawn the grid plan, and then drawn up a plan for all the goals except competitiveness, and then had tried to fudge that.  The Supreme Court said that the 2000s commission had already recommended that the 2010s commission do that.

Of course that might lead the commission to attempt to draw a competitive plan that is not "too" non-compact, and doesn't violate city borders "too" much.

BTW, is there actually any relationship between the grid plan and the final map?  Or was that something to sell the commission in the first place?
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« Reply #434 on: November 05, 2011, 04:18:34 am »
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BTW, is there actually any relationship between the grid plan and the final map?  Or was that something to sell the commission in the first place?

Maybe in the legislative maps. Certainly not in either the 2000 or 2010 Congressional map, at least not in places where the boundary might not very well have ended up at that point anyways.
I think the grid plan was written into the bill to provide pork for companies like Telemetric. It serves no real purpose except maybe the first time round, and there only if the last non-commission map was a TX/MD-style gerrymander.
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« Reply #435 on: November 17, 2011, 08:16:28 pm »
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AZ Supreme Court overturns the removal of Colleen Mathis.

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In a brief order, the justices brushed aside arguments by Lisa Hauser, the governor's attorney, that Brewer's decision was not subject to court review.

More to the point, they said that Brewer's power to oust a commissioner is limited to situations of substantial neglect of duty or gross misconduct. The justices said that nothing the governor alleged that Mathis did rises to that level.

Technically speaking, Thursday's order does not prevent Brewer from trying to fire Mathis again.

But the governor will have to act quickly. The order frees Mathis to resume her duties — and, presumably, to cast the deciding vote on the five-member panel to adopt new congressional and legislative maps.
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« Reply #436 on: November 17, 2011, 09:51:46 pm »
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AZ Supreme Court overturns the removal of Colleen Mathis.

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In a brief order, the justices brushed aside arguments by Lisa Hauser, the governor's attorney, that Brewer's decision was not subject to court review.

More to the point, they said that Brewer's power to oust a commissioner is limited to situations of substantial neglect of duty or gross misconduct. The justices said that nothing the governor alleged that Mathis did rises to that level.

Technically speaking, Thursday's order does not prevent Brewer from trying to fire Mathis again.

But the governor will have to act quickly. The order frees Mathis to resume her duties — and, presumably, to cast the deciding vote on the five-member panel to adopt new congressional and legislative maps.

Quick!  Sound the alarm!  Activist judges on the loose!
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Brittain33
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« Reply #437 on: November 17, 2011, 10:55:25 pm »
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So much for "the nuclear option." LOL.
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« Reply #438 on: November 18, 2011, 02:19:58 am »
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Welp.

Is this game over?
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« Reply #439 on: November 18, 2011, 02:34:20 am »
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Welp.

Is this game over?

Well, I guess Republicans can always try to impeach the justices who took that decision.
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« Reply #440 on: November 18, 2011, 09:00:40 am »
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Welp.

Is this game over?

No, they can throw Mathis out again.
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« Reply #441 on: November 18, 2011, 09:19:40 am »
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Welp.

Is this game over?

No, they can throw Mathis out again.

How so? Wouldn't the supreme court just say no again?
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Brittain33
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« Reply #442 on: November 18, 2011, 09:25:53 am »
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Welp.

Is this game over?

No, they can throw Mathis out again.

Presumably they've learned from their mistake and won't waste any more time. It only takes one senator--or is it two?--to decide not to continue this farce.
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krazen1211
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« Reply #443 on: November 18, 2011, 09:27:55 am »
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Welp.

Is this game over?

No, they can throw Mathis out again.

How so? Wouldn't the supreme court just say no again?

More to the point, they said that Brewer's power to oust a commissioner is limited to situations of substantial neglect of duty or gross misconduct.





They merely have to satisfy these criteria with detailed articles of impeachment detailing the situations of substantial neglect of duty.
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krazen1211
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« Reply #444 on: November 18, 2011, 09:28:56 am »
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Welp.

Is this game over?

No, they can throw Mathis out again.

Presumably they've learned from their mistake and won't waste any more time. It only takes one senator--or is it two?--to decide not to continue this farce.

It's not really a mistake as there is little downside, given how crappy the congressional map is. The legislative map is of course more reasonable.
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Brittain33
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« Reply #445 on: November 18, 2011, 09:32:43 am »
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It's not really a mistake as there is little downside

There is plenty of downside to stage a constitutional crisis for blatantly partisan ends (declaring war on a non-partisan commission isn't usually a popular move) when your state's economy is still struggling and in theory you're in office to create jobs and streamline government. They tried it once and got slapped down. How are they going to justify it a second time?

It only takes one or two senators, perhaps among the four who may face a pesky recall election as a result of the power grab. They may all be favored to win the recall, but why go through the bother?
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« Reply #446 on: November 18, 2011, 09:40:45 am »
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Welp.

Is this game over?

No, they can throw Mathis out again.

How so? Wouldn't the supreme court just say no again?

More to the point, they said that Brewer's power to oust a commissioner is limited to situations of substantial neglect of duty or gross misconduct.





They merely have to satisfy these criteria with detailed articles of impeachment detailing the situations of substantial neglect of duty.


So what was not used in court against her that will be used this time, is the question. Presumably all the evidence was presented and the Supreme court decided it didn't meet the standard of substantial neglect of duty or gross misconduct?
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krazen1211
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« Reply #447 on: November 18, 2011, 09:45:24 am »
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It's not really a mistake as there is little downside

There is plenty of downside to stage a constitutional crisis for blatantly partisan ends (declaring war on a non-partisan commission isn't usually a popular move) when your state's economy is still struggling and in theory you're in office to create jobs and streamline government. They tried it once and got slapped down. How are they going to justify it a second time?

It only takes one or two senators, perhaps among the four who may face a pesky recall election as a result of the power grab. They may all be favored to win the recall, but why go through the bother?

Why go through this charade for Ben Quayle? That's a very good question, which is why its perhaps not quite likely to succeed. Still, they are committed.

The justification should have been a nice picture of district 9 and its failure to adhere to the criteria. Torie already posted such.
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« Reply #448 on: November 18, 2011, 09:50:29 am »
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So what was not used in court against her that will be used this time, is the question. Presumably all the evidence was presented and the Supreme court decided it didn't meet the standard of substantial neglect of duty or gross misconduct?

Based on the order, it seems that all Brewer presented was the 1 page letter here. They thought that such was a political question and thus outside the judicial review process. Obviously if they proceed again they will have to do more than a 1 page letter this time.



http://www.prescottenews.com/news/current-news/item/18954-brewer-removes-colleen-mathis-from-airc-az-senate-concurs
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« Reply #449 on: November 18, 2011, 09:54:05 am »
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Keep messing with her and she might just pass something that looks like MD.
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