Could a redistricting stalemate impact Nebraskan voters?
Senators say redistricting for the state is quite the task. If the committee does not present a plan by the end of this week, it could impact how and when you vote.
LINCOLN, Neb. (KLKN) — Senators say redistricting for the state is quite the task.
If the committee does not present a plan by the end of this week, it could impact how and when you vote.
Every 10 years the legislative and congressional maps have to be reset along with the census. Right now senators can’t agree where new lines should be drawn.
“We’re gonna take a little bit from Map A and a little bit from B and come up with map C, I do think that there is definitely room for cooperation,” said Sen Carol Blood.
The state’s redistricting committee is at a stalemate, disagreeing on how the legislative map and congressional map should be set. They say rural and urban senators have different views on where the lines are drawn.
Senator Carol Blood of Bellevue says if a more clear plan is not in the works by Saturday, the speaker will shut the committee’s session down. Pushing the decision to January and creating a negative domino effect for Nebraskans.
“But there’s a downside to January is that if we wait that long, we created an excessive burden for our counties, who are waiting for us to finish our work so they get to task on their own work, said Blood. “It also is going to eliminate our ability to get other bills done that are important, especially when it comes to things like child welfare.”
Senator Tom Briese of Albion also hopes the committee can come up with a plan saying it could easily push back the election cycle.
“I could see the primary elections getting pushed back somewhat because of that, but we’ll see,” said Briese. “It would be uncharted territory for Nebraska. We hope we don’t have to go down that road.”
Briese says it’s a tough job, as all 49 senators have different opinions on how the legislative map should look. He says rural senators worry about representation as their populations decrease, and urban senators want proper representation as cities have grown in population.
For the congressional map, He said, “There’s several senators that really oppose the splitting of Douglas County, as LB1 proposed to do and that’s, again, that’s problematic for a lot of folks. Then others, really are opposed to the current splitting of Sarpy County. So there’s a divergence of opinion there.”