Anti-gerrymandering reforms in Colorado clear first hurdle in state Senate
DENVER (AP) — Colorado lawmakers want to ask voters to outlaw gerrymandering in the state’s constitution.
A bipartisan package of redistricting reforms cleared its first hurdle Monday, passing a state Senate committee on a unanimous vote.
The referendum seeks to boost the influence of unaffiliated voters in the political map-drawing process. It would prohibit the state redistricting commission from drawing maps designed to help a candidate or party.
Changing the state constitution requires a two-thirds vote in both chambers and voter approval.
Both sides say the existing process has failed to prevent gerrymandering. The Colorado Supreme Court has had to step in and choose a map three of the last four redistricting cycles.
Democrats won 57 percent of state House seats in 2016 even though Republicans won 50.4 percent of the statewide vote.