LANSING, Mich. – Michigan State University’s Institute for Public Policy & Social Research yesterday released an independent report, Michigan Redistricting Draft Map Analysis, citing concerns over the lack of data to support the Michigan Citizens Redistricting Commission’s attempts to adhere to the Voting Rights Act and other constitutionally ranked criteria.
“We support the voices of community leaders and independent analysts who are raising serious concerns over the impact of the current draft maps and whether they satisfy the Voting Rights Act and create true opportunities for minority communities to elect candidates. Right now, there are many open questions about the maps,” said Nancy Wang, Executive Director of Voters Not Politicians. “We recognize that the VRA requires a nuanced, fact-based inquiry. For this reason, it is imperative that the MICRC be open and transparent about how it is reaching its conclusions and make all analyses and supporting materials regarding Voting Rights Act compliance available to the public prior to any vote and without assertion of any privilege.”
Voters Not Politicians supports the following recommendation from IPPSR’s report:
“We recommend that the MICRC reevaluate its approach toward compliance with the VRA in light of these questions. Since primary data is largely unavailable, they need to assess whether their districts are likely to enable preferred candidates to win racially-polarized primary elections. If the MICRC decides that its approach toward compliance with the VRA is indeed optimal, we suggest that it accompany its maps with a justification of how the plans comply with the Voting Rights Act and with the related Equal Protection clause in the U.S. Constitution.”