Redistricting Panel Misses Deadline, Political Bickering Ensues

The Connecticut Supreme Court will appoint someone to draw Connecticut's new voting boundaries after a bipartisan panel failed to make its deadline.

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Unable to reach an agreement, the panel redrawing Connecticut’s political lines missed its deadline.

Now Connecticut’s Supreme Court will appoint someone to draw the voting boundaries.

“Control of the U.S. House of Representatives will be at stake in next year’s election. In 2022,” Senate President Martin Looney said. 

Looney, a member of the panel, said that’s why it was so hard to come to agreement over redrawing the lines.

“We were not able to reach a consensus on redrawing the five congressional districts,” he said. 

Each district needs to have roughly 721,000 people with little deviation.

“Quite frankly the districts that exist now are gerrymandered to protect incumbents and my understanding is the reason we don’t have a map out of the commission is because the five congressmen aren’t willing to give up even a little bit of political power in those districts,” Republican Party Chairman Ben Proto said.  

Proto blamed the impasse on Connecticut’s five Democratic congresspeople.

“Why is Torrington split between the 5th and the 1st? It shouldn’t be. Why is Waterbury a split town? It shouldn’t be,” Proto said. 

“Obviously there was an effort by Republicans to target certain districts to try and enhance Republican performance there. Those were areas on the Democratic side we were hoping to protect from those changes,” Looney said. 

As a result of the impasse, the Supreme Court will be left to pick a special master who will redraw the lines. The process has to end by Feb. 15.

“Republicans don’t have any congressional delegates or congressmen representatives in Washington. That’s what’s so striking here it’s a five nothing shutout,” Senate Republican Leader Kevin Kelly said. 

Kelly hopes the special master takes their proposals under consideration.

“We can’t even get a competitive race,” he said.

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