Letter to the editor: North Huntingdon’s stand for fair elections
I commend the North Huntingdon Township commissioners for unanimously adopting a resolution calling for state legislators to enact redistricting reform to end gerrymandering in Pennsylvania. In doing so at their June meeting, the commissioners joined more than 270 other Pennsylvania municipal and county governing bodies that have adopted resolutions supporting an independent citizen commission to draw the lines for congressional and state legislative districts every 10 years.
The commissioners’ action lines up with a statewide poll showing that nearly 70 percent of Pennsylvanians want an independent citizen redistricting commission and with a petition calling for a citizen commission signed by more than 40,000 Pennsylvanians.
The current process for drawing the lines permits Pennsylvania House and Senate leadership of both parties to gerrymander — to draw the lines to protect incumbents and to punish rank-and-file legislators who have acted against their wishes. In the last general election, half of all candidates ran unopposed. To keep their seats, politicians in such a system do not have to be responsive to their constituents, but rather to their political leadership.
Thank you, commissioners, for taking a stand for good government and fair elections in Pennsylvania.
The writer is co-coordinator of Fair Districts PA — Westmoreland.