Tuesday, October 25, 2011

Redistricting Maps! Round Four - Draw the Line Minnesota

Redistricting MinnesotaOn Friday, the Citizens’ Redistricting Commission, a group brought together by Draw the Line Minnesota, submitted it's maps to the Special Redistricting Panel. Here's a statement for the group's chair, Candi Walz:

We’re taking advantage of this opportunity to share what we heard with the judicial panel and to ensure Minnesotans who attended our meetings have their voice heard. We heard from hundreds of Minnesotans that want our state’s Congressional and legislative districts drawn to reflect the lives and needs of our citizens and communities, rather partisan interests of any kind, and that’s what this report aims to communicate.

In response to this, Rep. Sarah Anderson, had a comment of her own:

As best we can tell Draw the Line has ripped apart at least three tribal communities and is carving up almost four times the number of cities they are reporting. Draw the Line’s top principle was to preserve communities of interest, yet they completely disregard city and county boundaries, ignored the Voting Rights Act altogether and disenfranchise thousands of Minnesotans of their equal representation rights.

As we all know, Rep. Anderson has a knack for first-class hyperbole, but this is quite the statement, even for her. First of all, I don't really see how any plan that creates districts of equal population (as this one does) could "disenfranchise thousands of Minnesotans of their equal representation rights," but perhaps Rep. Anderson is using some sort of quantum theory of redistricting where things behave in ways that no one quite understands.

But this is not what really makes Rep. Anderson upset:

Monday, October 17, 2011

MN-8: Clark leads DFLers in fundraising

Duluth, Missabe and Iron Range RailwayThe three DFL candidates (minus Daniel Fanning) running for Chip Cravaack's eighth district seat have released their fundraising numbers for the third quarter and more so than endorsements and straw polls, the money raised by these candidates will have a tangible effect on the race.

8th District fundraising; DFLers through 9/30/11
Name Net raised Net spent Cash-on-hand
Tarryl Clark $375,143 $166,702 $235,545
Rick Nolan $65,649 $33,617 $32,032
Jeff Anderson $51,020 $30,409 $20,611

Tarryl Clark is proving that her fundraising chops were not solely the product of being Michele Bachmann's opponent, she raised more than three times as much money as her two DFL rivals combined, Rick Nolan and Jeff Anderson, who need to do much better at bringing in the cash if they are going to seriously challenge Cravaack in November.

Based on the endorsement arms race that is currently unfolding between Nolan and Anderson the DFL party endorsement for the eighth district seems like it is out of Tarryl Clark's reach. And since Nolan and Anderson are in the process of seeking the endorsement, they might feel like they don't need to be fundraising in earnest quite yet.

This is the advantage that Tarryl Clark has over her opponents. Having just run for congress in 2010, she is well aware of the fundraising required to mount a congressional campaign and clearly has no qualms about asking for money.

Jeff Anderson has only run for the city council, and when Rick Nolan last ran for congress things were quite a bit different; a candidate didn't need to spend every waking hour on the phone asking people for money, these days they do.

So while it seems unlikely that Tarryl Clark is going to win the DFL endorsement in the eighth district, she is building a warchest for the inevitable primary fight that will ensue after the endorsement is handed out. And if she keeps fundraising at this rate, she will be a tough primary opponent.

Tuesday, October 11, 2011

Redistricting: Odds and Ends

Redistricting MinnesotaThese are a few redistricting related stories that don't quite fit into their own posts. I used to do this sort of thing as "This Week in Redistricting" but now I don't. What is the significance of this change? We'll likely never know, but we must move forward under the new regime, "Odds and Ends" it is!


First we have the Special Redistricting Panel releasing it's schedule for oral arguments, which is as follows:

Scheduling Order #2
Oct 19, 2011 Responses to motions to adopt proposed redistricting criteria
Oct 26, 2011 Oral argument on redistricting criteria and unresolved issues
Nov 18, 2011 Motions to adopt redistricting plans and supporting memoranda
Dec 9, 2011 Responses to motions to adopt redistricting plans and supporting memoranda
Jan 4, 2011 Oral argument on redistricting plans