State Rep. Warren Kampf, R-157th Dist., announced Monday he is signing on with the effort to take redistricting out of the hands of the courts, the governor and the General Assembly and put it into the hands of an independent citizens commission.
He said he will co-sponsor House Bill 722, “a joint resolution proposing an amendment to the Constitution of the Commonwealth of Pennsylvania, further providing for the Legislative Reapportionment Commission for the purpose of reapportioning and redistricting the Commonwealth of Pennsylvania.”
“As a representative, I have refused to play partisan political games and always worked to find common ground. It was my hope that all the parties involved in the current process would be able to cooperate and address this important issue. Unfortunately, the events of the past month have shown that the only way to fix this system is to make it truly of the people,” Kampf said Monday in an email to constituents.
“I am now among 100 Republicans and Democrats in sponsoring House Bill 722. The legislation would replace the current redistricting system with an independent commission made up of four members who are registered with one of the two largest political parties; four members who are registered with the other of the two largest political parties; and, three members who are unaffiliated or registered with a minority party,” Kampf said.
“This commission would be responsible for developing all district maps; approval would require at least seven votes with at least one vote from each of the three groups. Citizens could appeal the final maps directly to the Pennsylvania Supreme Court.”
Kampf said there are issues “that must be addressed” in the legislation — including finding ways to ensure the independent commission would remain free of bias and influence from lobbyists and interest groups.
“I believe that on the whole this is right direction. I am happy to join with the many residents I serve who have asked me to support this effort,” said Kampf.
As an amendment to the Constitution, the legislation must pass both house of the General Assembly on two successive sessions, and then be approved by the voters.