Slay the Dragon Logo

SLAY THE DRAGON follows everyday people, outraged by what they see as an attack on the core democratic principle that every person’s vote should count equally. This election year, we’re joining together with grassroots partners to put an end to gerrymandering. Because this issue impacts each state differently, we’ve created a map to help you navigate how gerrymandering affects your state and community. SLAY THE DRAGON arrives on demand April 3.

 

GET CAUGHT UP

Click on your state in the map above to find out what’s going on and how you can help.

We are partnering with organizations in Michigan, Colorado, Wisconsin to support the creation of non-partisan redistricting commissions to protect votes across the country.

us map

Click on your state in the map above to find out what’s going on and how you can help.

We are partnering with organizations in Michigan, Colorado, Wisconsin to support the creation of non-partisan redistricting commissions to protect votes across the country.

Slay the Dragon Logo

SLAY THE DRAGON follows everyday people, outraged by what they see as an attack on the core democratic principle that every person’s vote should count equally. This election year, we’re joining together with grassroots partners to put an end to gerrymandering. Because this issue impacts each state differently, we’ve created a map to help you navigate how gerrymandering affects your state and community. SLAY THE DRAGON arrives on demand April 3.

 

GET CAUGHT UP

Click on your state in the map above to find out what’s going on and how you can help.

We are partnering with organizations in Michigan, Colorado, Wisconsin to support the creation of non-partisan redistricting commissions to protect votes across the country.

us map

Click on your state in the map above to find out what’s going on and how you can help.

We are partnering with organizations in Michigan, Colorado, Wisconsin to support the creation of non-partisan redistricting commissions to protect votes across the country.

Connecticut

Process

State Legislature

In Connecticut, the state Legislature is responsible for drawing both congressional and state legislative districts. A supermajority of two-thirds of each chamber is required to adopt a district plan, and the maps do not require approval by the Governor. 

Back-up Commission

If the Legislature fails to adopt a plan for any chamber, the state constitution (Art III § 6) requires the appointment of an eight-member, bipartisan commission to draw the maps. Each of the four legislative leaders designate two members, whom the Governor then appoints. If the back-up commission fails to adopt maps, the state Supreme Court assumes authority.

Criteria

In addition to the federal requirements of one person, one vote and the Voting Rights Act, Connecticut’s state constitution (Art III §§ 3, 4) requires that state legislative districts be contiguous. In addition, state House districts may not divide towns except when necessary. There are no state law requirements for drawing congressional districts.

Public Input

While no public hearings are currently required under Connecticut law, the Reapportionment Committee held six public hearings across all five congressional districts in July 2011. It is plausible that there will be similar opportunities for public input in 2021.

Issues

Pitfalls

Both chambers of the Legislature and the Governorship are controlled by Democrats. If the party has supermajorities in the Legislature when it is time to draw new maps, there will be an increased risk of partisan gerrymandering.

Census Delays

The Census Bureau may delay sending population data to states until as late as July 31, 2021. In the case of delay, Connecticut will have a compressed schedule for redistricting. In order to avoid triggering the backup processes, the legislative Reapportionment Committee will have to work quickly to pass a plan before September 15. Even without Census delays, however, Connecticut has a history of missing redistricting deadlines and relying on courts.

History

In the 2011 redistricting cycle, the Reapportionment Committee failed to meet its September 15 deadline. As a result, the back-up redistricting commission was appointed, consisting of all eight original committee members and one new member, selected by the eight. The Commission then missed its November 30 deadline and failed to complete the plans even after a 15 day extension, so redistricting was turned over to the state Supreme Court. In the case of In re Petition of Reapportionment Commission, the Court appointed a special master, Nathaniel Persily, to produce a new map. After rejecting a Republican challenge, the Court accepted Persily’s map in February 2012.

Legal Challenge

In NAACP v. Merrill, plaintiffs challenged prison gerrymandering in Connecticut as a violation of one person, one vote. In Connecticut (and other states), prisoners are counted as residents of the districts where their prisons are located, as opposed to being counted as residents of their home address. While the Second Circuit affirmed, for the first time, that plaintiffs could sue a state over prison gerrymandering, both parties filed for dismissal in April 2020.

Actions

In 2020, support state legislative candidates who favor fair districting. 

In 2021, participate in the Committee’s public input process.

  • Obtain Connecticut redistricting data from OpenPrecincts.
  • Start to plan out what defines your community – whether it’s a shared economic interest, school districts, or other social or other cultural, historical, or economic interests – and how that can be represented on a map. This will come in handy once the Legislature starts collecting feedback.
  • Use software tools such as Dave's Redistricting App and Districtr to draw district maps showing either (a) what a fair map would look like, or (b) where the community you believe should be better represented is located.   Read the Common Cause Activist Handbook on Redistricting Reform to learn about what reforms have been successful in the past, and what steps to take to enact reform in the future. 

Contacts

Princeton Gerrymandering Project Data provided by the Princeton Gerrymandering Project

State Info

Congressional Boundaries: Drawn by legislature
State Boundaries: Drawn by legislature
Legislative Control: Democratic
Governor's Political Party: Democratic
Last Updated: Oct 13 2020