Vote Nevada Supporters,
Today’s special session hearing on the proposed congressional and legislative redistricting maps was very concerning.
After legislators asked questions about map-creation decisions, without any answers, public comments were almost exclusively in opposition. Most of the commenters were people of color who were very opposed to having their communities “cracked.”
When applied to a community of interest cracking means dividing community members between two or more districts so that they lack the votes needed to elect a candidate of their choosing.
The Democratic majority’s proposed maps have pulled Latino voters from Congressional District 1, which currently has almost 43 percent Latino voters, and put them into CD 3 and CD 4, which then gives all three districts a minority majority. This means the Latino voters in the three new congressional districts are under 32 percent.
The Latino commentors who spoke during the hearing argued that they oppose their community being cracked between the three congressional districts. They want CD1 to remain as close to what it is now.
The other change to CD 1 causing worry is that the new map puts the east side of Las Vegas (where I have lived for 35 years) in the same district as Henderson and Boulder City. The east side has much more in common with the Historic West Side and North Las Vegas than it does with Henderson and Boulder City.
Native American community members also pointed out that in the new map some of their reservations are split into more than one district and so are also cracked.
The Democratic Party would like to distribute their voters into more districts to make those districts safe for Democratic candidates, while members of communities of color want their voting power concentrated into fewer districts so they can elect their preferred candidates.
You can listen to the hearing and the public comments on the recording here: https://vote-nevada.news/Joint-Committee-Hearing
Tomorrow, the Assembly meets at noon to consider AB1, which includes the Higher Education Board of Regents maps and a temporary suspension of the rules for judicial candidates filing for office. The exemption will allow judicial candidates to file in March instead of January.
The Senate will meet at 4:00 pm to consider SB1, which is the congressional and legislative district maps.
You will be able to access and watch tomorrow’s legislative meetings here: https://www.leg.state.nv.us/App/NELIS/REL/33rd2021Special