Republican James McMillan of Wallace told the redistricting commission that tonight may be the only time he agrees with Wallace Democrat Jon Ruggles - both expressed concerns about the large new District 7 proposed in legislative district Plan L-83, which includes Shoshone County. Others questioned why the citizen redistricting commission is evenly divided between the two parties, when Republicans dominate the Idaho Legislature. Several said they want rural residents' voice preserved, though commissioners responded that districts have to have close to 45,000 people to meet the one-person, one-vote constitutional requirement.
Paula Bauer of Viola said, “Map L-83 feels like a slap in the face to many rural residents” and warned against “political posturing.” Commission Co-Chair Dolores Crow responded that she's heard more political posturing from those testifying at tonight's hearing than she's heard from anyone on the commission.
Betsy Z. Russell covers Idaho news from The Spokesman-Review's bureau in Boise.
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