Bob McPhail 6:31 a.m., May 19
Joel Anderson gives $10,000 to Anti-Redistricting Effort
GOP state Sen. Joel Anderson has become one of the first contributors to a newly-formed political committee trying to overturn recently re-drawn state legislative district boundaries.
According to a disclosure report filed August 24, Anderson's re-election committee, Taxfighters for Anderson Senate 2014, gave $10,000 to F.A.I.R.- Fairness & Accountability In Redistricting, the group funding a referendum effort to get state voters to throw out the new district boundaries.
Other contributions came from Re-Elect Tony Strickland-Senate 2012 and Friends of Mimi Walters For Senate 2012, both $25,000 each, as well as individual donors, including Patrick Dirk of West Virginia, who gave $10,000.
According to the FAIR website :
"The Problem is a well-intentioned measure gone horribly wrong. Every 10 years, California is required to draw new districts for State Legislature. State Board of Equalization and U.S. Congress based on federal census data.
"With the passage of Proposition 11 in 2008, and Prop 20 in 2010, the Redistricting process was taken out of the hands of partisan politicians and into the hands of a 14 member citizens redistricting commission.
"The commission has shown a lack of understanding about how lines should be drawn in accordance with the Voters Rights Act of 1965. Often drawing maps that are open to lawsuits and have drawn sharp criticism from ethnic groups."
Critics of F.A.I.R.'s referendum effort, such as Calbuzz's Phil Trounstine http://www.calbuzz.com/2011/08/17192/ ">have a different take:
"Now that Prop. 11 has become law, however, and that commission has drawn an electoral map without regard to partisan fear or favor, GOP extremists who’ve grown fat and happy perched in safe gerrymandered seats are suddenly in a panic, realizing that their just-say-no ideology is a non-starter in fresh political terrain that accurately reflects the politics of California.
"It’s telling that Charlie Cook, the Washington-based master of nuts and bolts politics, recently cited California’s new redistricting process as a reform that could offer some hope of breaking the nation’s ritual gerrymandering-polarization political cycle."
UPDATE: The campaign fund of GOP Sen. Mark Wyland of Encinitas contributed $25,000 to F.A.I.R on Friday, per disclosure reports.