Social Explorer’s Andrew Beveridge on Redistricting in The Capitol by Sydney Beveridge
In the article “Incumbent Protection Program,” The Capitol’s Jon Lentz investigates the latest on redistricting negotiations in New York State. The Legislature and the Governor have discussed reform proposals but not yet implemented them.
In the looming showdown over redistricting, Senate Republicans have struggled to keep the upper hand.
The GOP conference has delayed an independent commission by a decade, challenged a law banning prison gerrymandering and made other moves designed to preserve their narrow majority.
But under the radar, Assembly Democrats are pushing to keep control over the process too.
The article cites Social Explorer’s Andrew Beveridge in the discussion of the incentives at play in resisting reform:
It’s not much of a surprise Assembly Democrats have not pushed for an independent process, several redistricting experts said. Even though they already have a sizable majority, they still have strong incentives to maintain control of the redistricting process and keep it out of the courts or, much less likely, an independent commission.
“If you go and draw it clean, you don’t have incumbency protection,” said Andrew Beveridge, a Queens College professor and redistricting expert. “Whereas if you started from scratch, which a commission would do, a lot of people would be at risk.”
The uncertainty of the process is probably what concerns Assembly Democrats the most, he added.
“That’s probably why they’re scared of it,” Beveridge said. “You wouldn’t know which one would be at risk.”