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Friday, November 11, 2005


Date: November 11, 2005
Sent to but not published by the New York Times

Mr Sam Hirsch and Mr Thomas E. Mann show their right wing ideological colors early in their piece (Op-Ed Nov 11, 2005, A25) when they say "to 'reform' the way in which ... districts are drawn" (quotes in original). They confirm this bias when in excoriating Ohio and California's desire to bring about a between census redistricting, they fail to mention the problems Texas had with between census redistricting that was engineered by the Republicans. I agree with them that redistricting should only take place after the census, but surely what is sauce for the Democratic goose is also sauce for the Republican gander. Hirsch and Mann let your readers down
Here in Massachusetts, the birthplace of gerrymandering, Common Cause and its allies are putting together a movement to take redistricting out of the direct control of the legislature and into the hands of an independent commission. This is supported by a bipartisan group of sponsors including the Republican Governor and Lieutenant Governor, both Democratic Candidates for next year's gubernatorial election and a host of state senators and representative from both sides of the aisle. There is no expectation of a between census redistricting because the appropriately long winded procedures for Constitutional amendment will unroll over the next four years
PS Sorry to push my luck here but I think a correction is in order. Perhaps it belongs in the Correction or Ombudsman section of the paper.
Thank you for your consideration.

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