Idaho's bipartisan citizen redistricting commission is gearing up to draw new legislative and congressional district lines, and this time around there'll be just one North Idaho member: Businesswoman Lorna Finman of Rathdrum, a GOP appointee. Ten years ago, both the Democrats and the Republicans appointed Panhandle members – Democrat Ray Givens and Republican Dean Haagenson – and they ended up having substantial influence on the result, which must include at least one commissioner voting with members of the other party to get a four-vote majority on the six-member commission.
This time around, it's Boise and Pocatello that each have two members on the panel, one from each party. So this time, it's those areas holding that potential card. Ten years ago, there were two Boiseans on the commission, but they were both from the same party (Democrats). The redistricting commission starts its work tomorrow; you can read my full Sunday column here.
Betsy Z. Russell covers Idaho news from The Spokesman-Review's bureau in Boise.
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