Maryland to Pennsylvania: You First
According to Keystone Crossroads, Maryland is proposing a six-state agreement to institute an independent commission to draw congressional districts. The other four states are New York, New Jersey, North Carolina, and Virginia.
Maryland recently rejected a proposal from Republican Governor Larry Hogan to reform the way Maryland draws their Congressional districts. Maryland’s political situation is practically reversed from Pennsylvania’s. The state House of Delegates and Senate are both overwhelmingly controlled by Democrats.
Redistricting reform has been a contentious issue in Pennsylvania for years.
Some in Pennsylvania see move as a positive.
“I’m glad to see that Maryland did this. I am definitely taking a look and I will mirror that legislation in Pennsylvania. We have to do something and this might get it moving,” Senator Lisa Boscola (D-Northampton) told Keystone Crossroads.
Some in Maryland view the move by Democrats in their state as purely political.
“It’s just stupid. I mean, I don’t know how else to put it. We are in charge of our own redistricting and then to throw out a bill on the floor that says, ‘Oh, we’ve heard your concerns. We’ll fix it when five other states agree with us.’ No. That’s not how it works,” Maryland state Senator Michael Hough (R-Frederick) told the Frederick News-Post.
“Both sides do it” has been a common refrain from those who are against reforming the way districts are redrawn. The agreement could help minimize that argument against the reforms.