LOS ANGELES--The National Association of Latino Elected and Appointed Officials (NALEO) have issued the following statement regarding the selection of the first eight members of California’s new Redistricting Commission:
“NALEO congratulates the persons selected today to serve as the first eight members of California’s new 14-member Redistricting Commission. They will have the important and historic opportunity to draw the congressional and state lines that will determine the future of California’s representative democracy for the next ten years.
“We are deeply disappointed that there is only one Latino in the group of new Commissioners. This is primarily a result of the random-drawing procedure for the selection of the first eight, which is one of the fundamental flaws in the Commission selection process. Latinos comprised 28% of the pool of applicants from which the first Commissioners were drawn; as a result of the drawing, Latino representation has been reduced to 13%.
“Under the provisions of the ballot measure that established the Commission, the selection process must produce a Commission that reasonably reflects the state’s diversity, and the final six members must be chosen in a manner to achieve this diversity. We urge the new Commissioners to fulfill their responsibilities by selecting the final members in a manner which ensures that the Commission reflects California’s diverse population.
“Latinos are California’s second largest and fastest growing population group, and they comprise more than one-third (37%) of the state’s population. The Commission cannot reflect California’s diversity without strong Latino representation. Furthermore, the Commission is composed of three groups of members – Democrats, Republicans, and persons not affiliated with either major party. It is critical that there be significant Latino representation in all three of these groups.
“We also call on the Commissioners to provide the public with a meaningful opportunity to provide input before they choose the final six Commission members. This will help ensure accountability and transparency in the final step of the selection process.
“NALEO believes that California’s eight new Commissioners share our vision for a redistricting process that is open, fair, and promotes robust public participation in shaping the contours of the state’s political geography. We look forward to working with the new members to achieve this important goal.”
The National Association of Latino Elected and Appointed Officials is the leadership organization of the nation's more than 6,000 Latino elected and appointed officials.