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The redistricting mess in Colorado

Posted by Kelly Maher on May 11th, 2011
 
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“Now it’s up to the courts or a costly special session,” reports 7NEWS about the Colorado legislature’s chaotic debate over redistricting as the session nears its end.

The always-entertaining state Sen. Shawn Mitchell, R-Broomfield, called out the Democratic Senate leadership during Monday’s night’s debate…

“If you wanted this body to do its job, you would have brought forward a [redistricting] map long before the 20th hour of the 118th day of the 120-day session,” said Mitchell. “You’re all embarrassed. And I’m embarrassed for you.”

While there were high hopes early on that the legislature might be able to compromise and draw a map of new Congressional districts, it became clear late Tuesday afternoon and into the evening that no agreement had been reached between House Speaker Frank McNulty, R-Highlands Ranch, Senate President Brandon Shaffer, D-Longmont, and Gov. John Hickenlooper.

The Senate adjourned at 6 p.m. Tuesday to learn that no agreement could be reached and that the House map (which was still alive at the time) was sent to the Democratic-controlled Senate State Affairs committee - also known as the “kill committee” - where it died just after 8 p.m.

Just prior to the vote, Sen. Bill Cadman, R-Colo. Springs, made an impassioned plea to the committee to keep it alive for one more day, in the hopes that an amendment could be found to pass on the Senate floor on Wednesday.

Sen. Rollie Heath, D-Boulder, the committee chairman, responded that after four hours of negotiations Tuesday there was no hope that a map could pass. Now Colorado’s redistricting map will be left, as in previous years, to the courts. WhoSaidYouSaid got word today that a lawsuit suit had already been filed on Monday by Republicans, led by attorney Richard Westfall, on the redistricting issue.

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  • Post by Kelly Maher on May 11th, 2011

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