Rep. Demmer Champions Legislation to End Gerrymandered Political Maps in Illinois

State Representative Tom Demmer (R-Dixon) is championing legislation this year that seeks to remove the legislative map-drawing process from the hands of politicians who gerrymander lines for political gain.

Demmer is co-sponsoring HJRCA10, which would end decades of political influence over how legislative district boundaries are determined. “Today’s partisan map-drawing process stifles democracy, because lawmakers are essentially choosing their voters rather than allowing voters to choose their representatives,” said Demmer. “Regardless of the party in control, gerrymandered maps undermine our representative form of government.”

HJRCA10 is modeled after prior Independent Map citizen initiatives. The measure would amend the Legislature Article of the Illinois Constitution and remove the mapping process from the hands of politicians. The Amendment would establish an independent, non-partisan commission to draw fair maps for legislators after each 10-year Census. The Commission would be comprised of 11 randomly selected members and would hold public hearings throughout the state before and after releasing a proposed district boundary plan.

“All 44 members of the House Republican Caucus have signed on to this bill, and I am pleased to know that Governor Pritzker has pledged to veto any gerrymandered map that lands on his desk,” Demmer said. “I am hopeful that we can get some bipartisan support on the measure and restore the integrity of our electoral process.”

If successful, the provisions of HJRCA10 would take effect beginning with the redistricting in 2021 following the 2020 U.S. Census. Candidates running for election in 2022 would be subject to the new fair map. HJRCA10 requires 71 votes to pass in the House.