Redistricting Without Party Politics?! Is that possible? A plan for redistricting that the Virginia Assembly will adopt as its own is the goal of the team from William & Mary School of Law. Along with teams from across the state that have entered the Virginia College & University Redistricting Competition, the WM School of Law Team is out to prove that it is possible to come up with a redistricting plan that is practical, objective, and fair. Although the competition was put together as an academic exercise, it has evolved into more with the Governor’s Bipartisan Commission on Redistricting taking notice and encouraging the exercise. While the William & Mary School of Law team is under no illusion that their map will be adopted wholesale by the VA Assembly, they are looking forward to the map being a source of comparison for the Assembly as it crafts official redistricting maps.
The competition is sponsored by the Wason Center for Public Policy and the Public Mapping Project. Teams will be drawing lines for the VA House of Delegates, the VA Senate, and for federal congressional House districts using Public Mapping software. The criteria for drawing the maps includes districts that are contiguous, fair in representation, equal in population, in compliance with the federal Voting Rights Act, keeping communities of interest together/respecting existing political subdivisions, compact, and electorally competitive. The judges for the competition will be Thomas Mann of the Brookings Institution and Norman Ornstein of the American Enterprise Institute.
Members of the William & Mary Law School Team are: Brian Cannon, Alex Grout, John Holden, Meredith McCoy, Rebekah Miller, Nicholas Mueller, Pete Newman, Sam Robinson, and Brian Rothenberg.
Check back for more info on the team and their ongoing progress!