It’s time for Pennsylvanians to be able to choose our state legislators, not the politicians choosing their own voters.
In the five redistricting cycles since 1971, the process has produced state House and Senate maps that too often punish political opponents, advantage incumbents, marginalize communities, or just simply split communities right down the middle. In 2021, Pennsylvanians deserve a process that is fair, transparent, and led by voters.
Under the PA Constitution, a group called the Legislative Reapportionment Commission (LRC) draws the voting districts for the General Assembly. The LRC is comprised of two Republicans and two Democrats, each of whom serves in the leadership of the PA House and Senate. Naturally, these four have a vested interest in maps that favor their party over the interests of voters.
However, PA law also dictates that the fifth and final member of the LRC be a Pennsylvania citizen not holding elected office. This fifth member serves as the chairperson of the commission. The other four members are supposed to choose this fifth person, but if they can't agree then the chair is chosen by the state Supreme Court. In PA history, the chair has almost always been chosen by the Court.
The 2011 LRC announced a public application process for its fifth member; however, they rejected all 13 candidates who applied. The eventual chair was chosen by the court in a closed-door process without any public input. That needs to be different in 2021, especially since a great many more people have applied to serve on the LRC this time -- thanks to people like you who applied.
Sign this petition to demand that the 2021 LRC let the cameras into their selection process for its fifth member. Tell them that the public has a right to know how this person will be chosen. The selection of its chair is an oportunity for the LRC to build trust among Pennsylvanians. They could see a redistricting process that is fair, open, and powered by the people of Pennsylvania.