Indiana Lawmakers on WFYI: Redistricting

In this episode on Indiana Lawmakers on WFYI, aired on March 19, 2021, host Jon Schwantes was joined by Indiana Sen. Tim Lanane (D-Anderson), Common Cause of Indiana policy director Julia Vaughn and retired Indianapolis attorney Jay Yeager to discuss redistricting, the decennial redrawing of congressional and legislative districts.  

From Fort Wayne: Gerrymandering in Indiana

The following column was written by Marilyn Moran-Townsend and Tom Hayhurst of Fort Wayne. Both are members of the Indiana Citizens Redistricting Commission, a group formed to advise and provide alternatives to the Indiana General Assembly in the decennial redrawing of Indiana's congressional and legislative districts. Moran-Townsend is a Republican member and Hayhurst is an alternate Democratic member of the commission. This column first appeared in the Fort Wayne Journal Gazette on March 7, 2021. *** Gerrymandering—an important term with an interesting origin.  Gerrymandering is important to each of us because it limits our voice in the Indiana legislature and in…

Suggestion from the 4th District: Should redistricting reform start at the grassroots?

If the Indiana Citizens Redistricting Commission is going to get its way, prying the constitutional duty of redrawing congressional and state legislative district lines from a reluctant Indiana General Assembly, maybe the best pressure tactic is to start closer to home, a leader to the effort suggested Tuesday evening. That means cities and counties should commit to turning over the once-a-decade redistricting of city council and county commissioner districts to independent, citizen-driven panels, Julia Vaughn, policy director for Common Cause Indiana, said. That would be one way to start erasing perceptions – real or simply assumed – of politician-protecting gerrymandering,…

Census data needed for redistricting may be available in August

UPDATE: The U.S. Census Bureau reported March 15 the data needed to redraw state legislative districts may be ready a month earlier than last reported, but at that point would come in an outdated format that might be difficult for states to use. According to a news release from the bureau, the data could be available in mid- to late August. The bureau's most recent estimate of the delivery date was Sept. 30. *** EARLIER: The U.S. Census Bureau has reported an additional delay in providing states with the population information needed for the decennial redrawing of congressional and legislative…

“Our districts are a mess:” ICRC hearing focuses on NE Indiana

Even in a Saturday afternoon Zoom meeting, the issue of how to redraw Indiana’s congressional and General Assembly districts drew a crowd. At least 80 people joined the videoconference March 13. About a dozen people, in addition to the public hearing’s organizers, spoke that day. The consensus: There are problems with state legislative districts that redistricting could improve. “State Senate districts are terrible. I think they really deprive persons of color from having a state senate representative. We have three State Senate seats in Fort Wayne, and they split the south part of Fort Wayne, which is a heavily concentrated…

Second ICRC meeting focuses on far-flung 5th Congressional District

The second virtual public hearing of the Indiana Citizens Redistricting Commission focused Wednesday evening on the state's 5th Congressional District, a mix of rural, urban and suburban with communities and interests so diverse that some participants questioned how they all could be represented. The commission, a nine-member “multipartisan” citizens group formed to advise and offer an alternative to the upcoming redrawing of congressional and legislative district lines by the Indiana General Assembly, is holding a series of nine public hearings, all held virtually due to public health concerns and organized by congressional district. Indiana's 5th extends from the Meridian-Kessler neighborhood…