UPDATE: The Illinois Supreme Court has granted our motion for a direct appeal of the Cook County Circuit Court ruling against the constitutionality of the proposed citizen-initiated amendment on redistricting.
"The Illinois Supreme Court’s willingness to hear this case quickly is a positive for the 563,000 Illinoisans who signed the Independent Map Amendment petitions and thousands more who want an opportunity to have their votes counted in November,” said Dennis FitzSimons, Chair of Independent Maps. “The Illinois Supreme Court hasn’t ruled on a citizen initiative since 1994 and has never ruled on these questions that apply to a redistricting amendment. We look forward to explaining why the lower court ruling needs to be overturned and why voters this fall should be able to make the changes needed to stop politicians from drawing their own legislative maps.”
Illinois government is broken. Career politicians go behind closed doors and rig elections by drawing legislative maps to benefit themselves. The Independent Map Amendment will reform the rules and require a process of drawing maps that is transparent, impartial and fair. Illinois elections should reflect the will of the people, not the politicians.
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Independent Map Amendment
Independent Map Amendment Passes Petition Test at Board of Elections
A state review of Independent Map Amendment petitions indicates the submitted petitions likely contain more than the minimum 290,216 valid signatures of registered voters required to place the proposed redistricting reform constitutional amendment on the November ballot.
On Monday, the Illinois State Board of Elections (ISBE) staff completed the signature verification examination of a random sample of Independent Map Amendment petition signatures, and the ISBE review projected that nearly 73 percent of the 563,974 petition signatures appear to be genuine and match the signature of a registered voter living at the address printed on the petition. The staff checked 28,199 signatures selected at random by computerized sampling of 5 percent of petition signatures.
The sampling indicates a minimum of 382,355 and a maximum of 395,021 valid signatures were submitted to the state – well in excess of the 290,216 signatures required by law to place the amendment on the ballot.
Read more in our news release HERE»
The Independent Map Amendment Explained
In Springfield on Feb. 10 to mark the nine-year anniversary of announcing his candidacy, President Barack Obama addressed the Illinois General Assembly. His speech was both a walk down Memory Lane and a look to the future – his vision of what he believes is necessary “to build a better politics.”
He singled out redistricting reform as one of the keys to improving political discourse. Although he was talking about reform of congressional redistricting, his arguments against partisan gerrymandering also apply to redistricting of the Illinois House and Senate.
Using the White House transcription of President Obama’s remarks, we’ve excerpted the redistricting reform section of his speech. And in (COMMENT) paragraphs, we added our own annotations about redistricting of state legislative districts in Illinois.
Read the full blog post HERE »
As we begin a new year and head into the final months of our petition drive, we reflect upon our progress over the past year and look forward to big things in 2016. Read our year-end report HERE »
The number of Independent Maps supporters continues to grow.
Recent additions include the Chicagoland Chamber of Commerce, the Illinois Campaign for Political Reform and the Sargent Shriver National Center on Poverty Law.
View full list of supporters »
Need a primer on redistricting?
This informative and entertaining explanation, courtesy of CHANGE Illinois, explains Everything You Need To Know About Redistricting. Click on it. Learn. And then subscribe HERE for occasional updates about the Independent Map Amendment.
The Independent Map Amendment will create a system where the voters choose their representatives instead of the representatives choosing their voters.
By adopting the Independent Map Amendment, the redistricting process in Illinois will:
- Produce Illinois House and Senate districts drawn without regard to incumbency or partisanship;
- Attract more candidates for the General Assembly and more competition for legislative seats, resulting in more choices for voters;
- Protect the voting rights of racial and ethnic minorities and prohibit drawing maps that dilute or diminish the ability of racial or language minority communities to elect the candidates of their choice;
- Respect communities with shared interests and avoid breaking through political and geographic boundaries; and
- Allow the public to view and participate in redistricting. Illinoisans deserve legislative elections where issues are debated, candidates listen to their constituents and voters have choices.