(HARRISBURG) – PA Senate Majority Leader Jake Corman (R-34) repeated his pledge that the Senate stands ready to return to Harrisburg to finish reforming the system by which Congressional and state legislative districts are drawn in Pennsylvania.
“We are committed to doing whatever it takes to pass significant redistricting reform for Pennsylvania,” Senator Corman said. “While it would be more expedient to use existing legislation that makes extraordinary changes to how Congressional districts are drawn, we support calls for a special session to address the issue. To do nothing means you support the status quo. We have been very clear – we do not support the status quo, but rather want to give power back to the people.”
On June 13, the Senate passed historic, bipartisan legislation to establish an independent redistricting commission that would be responsible for drawing the boundaries of legislative and Congressional districts.
Because the legislation would amend the Pennsylvania Constitution, it must be passed in two consecutive legislative sessions and be approved by voters in a statewide referendum.
In a separate question to be put to the voters, the Senate legislation also will ask voters if the state should be divided into judicial districts to ensure a broader range of regional interests are represented on Pennsylvania’s highest courts.
“The voters make the final decision when it comes to changing the Constitution,” Senator Corman said. “We want to make certain the voters have the opportunity to vote on these two significant changes to our Constitution. We have embraced change so ultimately the voters can decide.”
The next legislative and Congressional redistricting cycle is in 2021. A Senate-passed bill (Senate Bill 22) is awaiting action in the House of Representatives.
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