Supreme Court refuses to rehear redistricting referendum
After striking down a popular, citizen-driven referendum to change the way Illinois draws its political maps, the Illinois Supreme Court has denied a motion for rehearing the case.
The referendum would have taken the power to draw political maps away from the politicians and created a non-partisan system for fairly drawing district boundaries.
Illinois Governor Bruce Rauner said, “Today’s court decision is very disappointing, but not unexpected. Now that the courts have denied Illinoisans the right to vote on a redistricting referendum in November for the last time, it is up to the General Assembly to address political reform – term limits and independent redistricting – as soon as they convene this fall.”
Senate Republicans have supported legislative attempts to reform the redistricting system, but most genuine efforts have been blocked by Democrat leadership. Earlier in 2016, both chambers of the Illinois General Assembly passed redistricting reform proposals, but the Democrat leaders in each chamber refused to take up the other chamber’s bill.
Many statehouse insiders referred to the Democrats’ actions as a thinly veiled attempt to appear sympathetic to the issue while making sure no reforms actually take place.