Sunday, April 24, 2011

Federal Delegation Should Butt-Out of Missouri Redistricting

For quite some time now, Missouri's state legislature has been working on the new Congressional maps based on the 2010 census data. The redistricting has not been without struggle as leadership in both the House and Senate have been bogged down trying to appease members of their own chambers and the egos attempting to pull the strings from Washington D.C.

As the AP reported last week, U.S. House members met with top ranking GOP members of the Missouri legislature. The purpose for all of this is to influence the legislators in getting the new Congressional maps drawn in a way that would optimize their chances at re-election. Aside from being an affront to standards of personal decency and ethics, the meddling of our Congressional delegation also flies in the face of Missouri's Constitution, which clearly states that "the general assembly shall by law divide the state into districts corresponding with the number of representatives to which is it entitled." Our federal delegation should have no further say in the proceedings than any other citizen of the state, and limiting their entanglement may be good for the state as a whole.

Congressmen having to maintain positive professional relationships with legislators from their district could have a positive impact on the entire political dialogue and clean up ugly election rhetoric. With Congressmen at the mercy of their state senators and representatives, we would be less likely to see personal attacks and outright lies during election season as potential candidates may actually have face consequences for what they say. Besides with the economy in the tank and three military conflicts, don't Congressman have better things to than worry about being re-elected?

Read more by William Lynch at his blog: Life as a Law Student.

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