The United States Supreme Court may have breathed new life into a quest for Michigan Democrats to change how districts are drawn. In a 5-4 decision Monday, the Supreme Court Justices ruled the independent redistricting commission created by Arizona voters in 2000 is legal. That commission takes power to draw district lines — creating the areas lawmakers represent — from the Arizona Legislature. Supporters say this limits partisan gerrymandering — the process of drawing electoral boundaries to the gain of one political party — while critics say it takes power away from state lawmakers who were assigned the task by the U.S. Constitution.
An effort to set up a Michigan version of a redistricting commission started and stalled in the Michigan Legislature in 2013. Proposed by Democrats, the idea got little traction in the Republican-controlled Capitol.
After the court’s decision Monday, Michigan Democratic Party chairman Lon Johnson called on lawmakers to reconsider the idea.