GOP releases redistricting planMajority Republicans in the state legislature have introduced their plan to redraw Wisconsin's political boundaries for the next decade.
By: Shawn Johnson, Wisconsin Public Radio, Superior Telegram
Majority Republicans in the state legislature have introduced their plan to redraw Wisconsin's political boundaries for the next decade. And they're poised to vote on it before the upcoming round of recall elections.
When one party runs everything after official census numbers come out, it gets to handle redistricting. It's a huge prize -- one Republicans stood the risk of losing if they waited to vote on these maps until after the August recall elections.
Republicans insisted they were fulfilling their constitutional duty, but state Democratic Party Chair Mike Tate called it a naked power grab by the GOP.
"They are clearly trying to solidify a monopoly on all levers of power in government,” says Tate. “They control the legislature, the governor's mansion and the state Supreme Court. There is no check on their abuse of authority or power right now, and I think the people of Wisconsin are going to find this repugnant and distasteful."
Tate said a preliminary review of the plan by the Democratic Party showed it remapped two of their challengers in the upcoming recalls right out of their districts. If that were true, it would mean that even if Baraboo's Fred Clark and DePere's Nancy Nusbaum were to defeat Republican Senators Luther Olsen and Robert Cowles in the upcoming recalls, they'd have to move just to defend their seats in 2012.
Tate says the map would also bump Kenosha Democratic Sen. Robert Wirch out of his district.
A spokesman for Senate Majority Leader Scott Fitzgerald says public hearings on the plan are likely next week and a vote in the full Senate could come as soon as the following week.
Several Democrats have already promised legal challenges.