Letter to the Editor: April Supreme Court Election Urgent for Fair Maps
On April 4, 2023, we citizens of Wisconsin have a chance to fix the problem of unfair maps: gerrymandered voting districts that give one party a structural advantage over the other party. This is simply wrong, by either Democrats or Republicans.
Currently, and for the past decade in Wisconsin, unfair voting districts have given Republicans unchallenged majorities in both houses of the Legislature. Wisconsin now has the most gerrymandered voting districts in the nation, according to the Poynter Institute’s Politifact.
This is the case in spite of the fact that citizens in Wisconsin overwhelmingly want fair maps! Voters in 32 counties passed nonbinding referenda in favor of nonpartisan redistricting, as we did in Door County. In addition, 55 county boards and 21 municipalities throughout Wisconsin have passed resolutions requesting that the Legislature provide for nonpartisan redistricting.
Gerrymandering is a major problem. Issues that Wisconsinites across the political spectrum care about – funding public schools, expanding Medicare, gun-violence prevention and more – are not even considered by our Legislature because the majority of senators and Assembly members have safe districts. It creates a situation where they don’t have to worry about what the general public wants; they can concentrate instead on promoting their party’s objectives.
Last April, the Wisconsin Supreme Court, by vote of its conservative majority, allowed the Republican Legislature to install the most gerrymandered districts among several proposed by various entities, including citizen-submitted maps, for the required redistricting following the 2020 census. This is the means for ensuring a dominant Republican Legislature for another decade.
But this year on April 4, there is an election for a new Wisconsin Supreme Court justice. We must elect a candidate who believes that fair maps and the voice of the people matter!
Fish Creek, Wisconsin