Nobody Except Legislative Democrats Likes Their Redistricting Proposal

Politico — December 14, 2018

By Matt Friedman
New Jersey Playbook
Matt Friedman's must-read briefing on the Garden State's important news of the day


ZERO PEOPLE IN SUPPORT OTHER THAN DEMOCRATIC LEGISLATORS — Opposition to Democrats' redistricting amendment on display at hearings, by POLITICO's Matt Friedman: New Jersey's Democratic lawmakers on Thursday defended their plan to overhaul the state legislative redistricting process in a way that would likely favor them for decades, despite strong opposition from across the political spectrum, including the Democratic Party's most prominent redistricting reform advocate. Testifying during a nearly three-hour Senate hearing on the proposed constitutional amendment — the Assembly held a similar hearing simultaneously — state Sen. Nicholas Scutari, the prime sponsor, said he was "bewildered" by the opposition. "I've heard these outlandish reactions throwing around the word gerrymandering. It's just simply not true," Scutari (D-Union) said. Opponents said they were insulted at an implication by Scutari that they hadn't read the amendment. "We will not be discredited with the allegation that we have not read the bill, because that's not the case," Dena Mottola-Jaborska, associate director of New Jersey Citizen Action, told the Senate panel. The Senate hearing, during which Scutari was the only person to testify in favor of the proposal while dozens testified against it, illustrated the rare alliance that has formed in opposition to the amendment: Republicans, along with a host of liberal advocacy groups, non-partisan good government groups, environmentalists, academics and even Democratic Gov. Phil Murphy.


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