The Better Government Association is extremely disappointed with the Illinois Supreme Court ruling finding the Independent Map amendment unconstitutional. The ruling is a big step backward for democracy and the state of Illinois.
Currently, politicians gerrymander legislative districts to protect incumbents, discourage challengers and advantage their political party. Allowing the Independent Map Amendment to go to the voters would have assured them the opportunity to have a voice in deciding how their districts are drawn and given them the choice of an independent commission. With today’s decision, they have lost the option to support or oppose an independent map amendment.
“In other states, the independent commissions have increased competition, representation and fairness. It’s a shame Illinois voters won’t have the opportunity to decide how their districts are drawn,” said Andy Shaw, President and CEO of the Better Government Association.
Statement on Independent Map Amendment ruling
August 25, 2016
CHANGE Illinois issued the following statement after the Illinois Supreme Court’s ruling on the Independent Map Amendment:
“CHANGE Illinois is deeply disappointed with the Illinois Supreme Court’s decision today denying the people of Illinois the opportunity to vote on the proposed Independent Map Amendment, a citizen-led initiative that has earned overwhelming bipartisan public support throughout Illinois.
“While CHANGE Illinois is disappointed that voters will not have the final word on this issue on Election Day, we are proud to be part of a true grassroots movement over the last six years. Hundreds of thousands of people across the state spoke out in 2015 and 2016 by circulating petitions, writing letters, making calls and participating in events in favor of meaningful political reform.
“CHANGE Illinois believes the energy and momentum of this movement is larger than any single initiative and that a mandate for change exists across the state. For these reasons, we will double-down and fight even harder to make the rules that govern political participation more fair and inclusive. This includes promoting competitive elections, defending voting rights, securing judicial independence, ensuring open and impartial redistricting, and reducing the corrupting influence of money in politics. Hundreds of thousands of people throughout Illinois spoke out in favor of reform and we will not rest until their voices are heard.”