When Californians considered Proposition 11, establishing the redistricting commission, I was skeptical that the Rube Goldberg-esque machine could actually pass a plan, which could be implemented in time for the 2012 elections, which would not be subject to a major court challenge or referendum.
Well the measure passed, and it survived some court fights. Now comes news that Republicans who qualified a referendum to reconsider the state Senate lines are urging a no vote, admitting (quite candidly) that the main purpose of the referendum was to try to block the lines from being used in the 2012 elections.
Now I look forward to the debate over whether the lines created by the Commission were better or worse than the lines drawn by the California legislature (which has been accused of engaging in both partisan gerrymandering and bipartisan (sweetheart) gerrymandering in the past. But I do think it is significant that the commission was able to produce lines which actually are being used, without change, in this year’s elections.