Redistricting commission plans for milestone vote between Republican, Democrat proposals

Republican redistricting commissioners Doug York (L) and David Mehl (R) listen during an Arizona Independent Redistricting Commission meeting on Dec. 13, 2021. /Photo by Jeremy Duda | Arizona Mirror

By Jeremy Duda | Arizona Mirror

Final maps are still a little ways off, but the Arizona Independent Redistricting Commission will hit a major turning point at its next meeting when it will decide whether to move forward with either the Democratic or Republican proposals as its only template.

At the commission’s meeting on Monday, independent Chairwoman Erika Neuberg said it would be the last meeting in which commissioners would be able to draw up separate maps based on their differing visions and goals for the congressional and legislative districts that Arizona will use for the next decade. On Thursday, when the AIRC meets next, the commissioners will choose maps to use as their new starting points. And those are the starting points that the commission will stick with until it makes its final decisions, Neuberg said.

That means the commissioner will have to choose between competing maps proposed by the AIRC’s Democratic and Republican members. The commission’s mapping consultants will prepare four new maps for Thursday’s meetings — Democratic and Republican proposals for both the congressional and legislative maps based on recommendations the commissioners made on Monday.

In the case of a partisan split between the commission’s two Democrats and two Republicans, Neuberg will be the tie-breaking vote. And Neuberg has regularly sided with her GOP colleagues against the two Democrats so far this year.

Nonetheless, Democratic Commissioner Shereen Lerner opened Monday’s meeting by criticizing members of her own party who have attacked Neuberg for her numerous 3-2 votes with the Republicans.


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December 2021