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As I See It

One step closer to the Iowa model



It has been a long road already, and there is still a long way to go, but Wisconsin is inching closer to providing more fair elections. At issue is the practice of gerrymandering political maps to benefit one political party over another. In Wisconsin the rules say whichever party is in control in the state Legislature is tasked with drawing the political boundaries which determine in which district Wisconsinites reside. That has led to maps that look like they’ve been drawn by school children, with many squiggly lines with no uniformity. The maps are drawn by politicians and their attorneys designed to keep those in control in control. As a result, candidates are essentially choosing their voters instead of the voters choosing their candidates. Now, lawmakers in Madison have introduced legislation calling for a constitutional amendment to adopt a fairer system. If approved by two consecutive sessions of the Legislature and approved by voters in a statewide referendum, Wisconsin would adopt the Iowa model of drawing political boundaries, establishing a bipartisan group of non-politicians to oversee the process. This is long overdue. In Iowa, they have finished their redistricting process without a fight. Wisconsin’s redistricting is tied up in the courts, at taxpayer expense. Wisconsinites want fair maps, and those maps should reflect the will of the people, not the will of the politicians.

Scott Robert Shaw serves as WIZM Program Director and News Director, and delivers the morning news on WKTY, Z-93 and 95.7 The Rock. Scott has been at Mid-West Family La Crosse since 1989, and authors Wisconsin's only daily radio editorial, "As I See It" heard on WIZM each weekday morning and afternoon.

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