So, yesterday, I talked a little about proposition 20 and the flaws it contains. I can't properly consider a proposition without fully understanding what the fine details are. Yes, on the surface there's reason to believe that proposition 20 should become law. However, as I suggested yesterday there's serious problems contained in this legislation. No matter how good the idea, the fine details need to also stand muster. There's got to be fewer flaws than the good done by the law.
Today, I would consider more deeply the opposing initiative, proposition 27. The authors of proposition 27 are Daniel Lowenstein and election law attorney Fred Woocher. It is an alternative to proposition 20, which establishes reform that truly merits the consideration of thoughtful Californians. It should not be dismissed outright without thought. Here's what proposition 27 (FAIR - Financial Accountability In Redistricting) would do:
- Return control of redistricting to a democratically elected body that is accountable to the people, which can also be fired by the people.
- Reduce the cost of redistricting. This is important at a time when California is spending far more money than it is taking in. FAIR establishes an unbreakable cap on taxpayer dollars that would be spent on this political game of musical chairs. FAIR will offer a "likely decrease in state redistricting costs totaling several million dollars over 10 years."
- Mandate that all districts of the same type be precisely equal in population - no variations in districts means there will be no "rotten boroughs".
- Reduce the number of cities and counties that are split between districts.
- Strengthen effective community representation.
- Return to the people the right to referendum, to vote no on a congressional redistricting statute.
- Unlike proposition 20, there will be no income test for admittance to a district. FAIR requires all redistricting proposals to strictly conform to the mandates of the Voting rights Act. This will ensure fair representation for all people.