Democrats have long decried the redistricting process. Unfair maps drawn 10 years ago, they argue, created a biased system. And Rep. Carey Hamilton (D-Indianapolis) said the new maps perpetuate that.
“Let’s be clear: these maps are among the most gerrymandered in the history of our nation,” Hamilton said. “And thus, by definition, they will disenfranchise voters.”
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Republicans, of course, argue the opposite. Rep. Tim Wesco (R-Osceola), in praising the bill’s author, said the maps create compact districts and keep communities of interest together.
“The truth is, people don’t want districts that look like salamanders and I commend Rep. [Greg] Steuerwald,” Wesco said. “He worked harder than I did in seeking to make these maps as compact and I would daresay beautiful as possible.”
It wasn’t just Democrats who voiced complaints. Rep. Jeff Ellington (R-Bloomington), one of the few Republicans whose seat likely becomes less safe, decried the loss in his district of the I-69 corridor from Bloomington to Crane, which he called a community of interest.
Ellington and two other Republicans joined every Democrat in voting against the bill. The measure now heads to the Senate.