Wednesday, July 25, 2018

Hanover Tp (NC) Supervisors Endorse Gerrymander Reform

Cecil Blocker and his companion. She
denied she is his daughter.  
You can add Hanover Tp (Northampton County) to the list over 270 counties, cities, townships and boroughs fighting for redistricting reform in Harrisburg. At their July 24 meeting, Supervisors voted 3-1 in favor of a resolution supporting a constitutional change that will allow an independent and inclusive commission to draw the boundaries for state legislative and congressional races.

Supporting this nonbinding resolution were Susan Lawless, Michael Prendeville and John Diacogiannis. Voting No was Steve Salvesen. Jack Nagle was absent.

The vote followed a debate in which Salvesen argued that the resolution was not just "outside the Constitution of the United States and state law," but "might even be in violation of the oath of office we took."  He condemned "activist judges"on the Pennsylvania Supreme Court "who decided to become legislators" and draw their own map He said the current law is "very clear" and contains "no ambiguity."

"It very clearly has not worked," responded Lawless. Diacogiannis agreed. He acknowledged that no commission is truly independent, but it was time to try something less political. "It may turn out to be just as bad as we have it now," he said. 

Solicitor Jim Broughal advised Supervisors that nothing in the resolution is contrary to the Constitution. Salvesen acknowledged that he's no lawyer

After the vote, a group of about ten Fair Districts Pa members applauded the board. That grassroots group describes itself as a "nonpartisan, citizen-led, statewide coalition working to create a process for redistricting that is transparent, impartial, and fair."  They included Hanover Township residents Joanne Kelhart, Esq., Jean Shenk and Cecil Blocker.

"My vote doesn't count," said Blocker. "I find that to be unacceptable."

As Supervisors turned to other items on the agenda, most of this citizens' group melted away. Salvesen, a veteran of many political firestorms in his career, said that he had driven them off, and jokingly threatened to bring the matter up again once they were gone.


Anonymous said...

Yawn, a nothing vote by republicans that know that. At least Salveson was honest. The others knew they could vote for it and nothing would happen. Their seats are safe. Hanover is a republican safety zone. Lets see them vote to condemn the idiot in chief Trump. Now that would be interesting.

Bernie O'Hare said...

You are the first comment in my other Hanover post and have a real superiority complex. You apparently hate anything outside the city. It is thanks to elitists like you that Trump won. Dumb ass.

Anonymous said...

Democrats "We think gerrymandring is unfair"

Add the unspoken thought "We want to do it as well, fair is fair"

All the schemes in the world will never eliminate gerrymandering. Both sides practice it.

Anonymous said...

We have a commission now made up of 4 rep 4 dems and 1 chairman of the majority parity, with the right of appeal. There is no such thing as a non-partisan in america today.