Issues: Elections

State Senator Adriano Espaillat Hails Court Ruling Upholding Prison Gerrymandering Reform

 

Prison gerrymandering deprived communities of color of equal representation and artificially propped up Upstate districts at the expense of New York City

December 2, 2011
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State Senator Adriano Espaillat Hails Court Ruling Upholding Prison Gerrymandering Reform

 

Prison gerrymandering deprived communities of color of equal representation and artificially propped up Upstate districts at the expense of New York City

December 2, 2011
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Campaign Finance Reform: Join the Fight

For too long, our politics have been drowned in a flood of corporate political spending that undermines the voices of real people. 

And it's gotten worse: the Supreme Court's Citizens United decision has meant even more corporate cash is flooding into politics. New York must push back against these special interests by improving shareholder control and corporate disclosure.

November 16, 2011
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Lawmakers Already Drawing Up Special Session Wish Lists

The Capitol wrote about the pressing issue of independent restricting being on Governnor Cuomo's agenda for the potential Legislature in Albany that will meet to discuss the state budget. Passing independent redistricting is at the top of the list of things we need to take care of.

If Gov. Andrew Cuomo calls the Legislature back to Albany this year to deal with a $350 million budget shortfall, lawmakers say he could also open the door to debating a host of simmering issues – including independent redistricting.

The next legislative session begins in less than two months, but Cuomo told radio host Susan Arbetter yesterday that the budget gap could force his hand: “If this trend continues, we may have to bring back the Legislature.”

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November 15, 2011
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Sen. Gianaris Optimistic After 2011 Elections

Senator Gianaris was on YNN's Capital Tonight with Liz Benjamin to discuss the results of Tuesday's elections. The senator hopes to gain back control of the state senate for the Democrats.

Big wins for Democrats this week have State Senator Mike Gianaris optimistic about next year’s elections. His goal is to help Democrats recapture control of the state senate.

Watch the video here.

November 10, 2011
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Ballot Marking Devices Help Voters with Disabilities Cast Their Ballots

As Election Day approaches, Senator Stewart-Cousins is reminding registered New Yorkers to vote. And with the new paper ballot system, the Senator and the Westchester Independent Living Center are raising awareness about the Ballot Marking Device (BMD), which helps voters with disabilities privately and independently cast their ballots.

November 2, 2011
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Keep Race, Job Protection Out Of Redistricting, New York State Voters Tell Quinnipiac University Poll

Quinnipiac University's poll yeilded in results that called the need for a fair and unbiased redistricting process, particualrly not taking into account race or occupation. A majority of New York voters support an independent commission to draw district lines and oppose drawing lines to protect incumbents

Don't draw legislative district lines to create racial or ethnic districts, such as blacks and Hispanics, New York State voters say 72 - 21 percent in a Quinnipiac University poll released today. There is strong agreement among all political groups.

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October 27, 2011
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Cuomo renews vow to veto district lines drawn by joint legislative commission

NCPR News reported on Governor Cuomo's stance on not supporting district lines drawn by joint legislation commision, because they are not independent and nonpartisan. Senator Gianaris spoke with Karen Dewitt, praises Cuomo's unwavering position on the issue of redistricting and the need for a fairer process.

Governor Andrew Cuomo is stating in no uncertain terms that he intends to veto the redistricting lines now being devised by a joint legislative commission, because they are not independent and nonpartisan. 

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October 27, 2011
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Battles to Shape Maps, and Congress, Go to Courts

The New York Times recently wrote an excellent piece on the the risks of gerrymandering and the rising legislation surrounding redistricting that calls for a more fair process that doesn't take partisan gerrymandering too far or ignore minority voters. Senator Gianaris' strong advocacy for independent redistricting reform is further supported in these arguments.

October 27, 2011
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Redistricting raises bias concerns

Albany Times Union wrote about how the Senate GOP is continuing to try to use gerrymandering for their own political advantage. Gerrymandering only serves the GOP's partisan agenda and does not allow voters to be fairly represented.

ALBANY -- When LATFOR, the legislative panel charged with the controversial redistricting process, held its latest hearing Wednesday on Long Island, several witnesses drew attention to the area around Brentwood, which in contrast to wealthier communities in Suffolk County is denser and has a higher proportion of black and Latino residents.

The area is split among four Senate districts -- all occupied by Republicans.

October 6, 2011
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Prison Gerrymandering Debate

State of Poltiics wrote about the prison-based gerrymandering case. Senator Gianaris believes prison-based gerrymandering is illegal and that the GOP is simply trying to manipulate government for its partisan advantage

Right now, a state supreme court is hearing the case of Little vs. LATFOR. It is the Senate Republicans case challenging the law implemented in 2010 by the then-Democratic lead Senate in which prisoners would be counted at their last known address instead of where they are being incarcerated.

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October 4, 2011
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A German teenager has punched holes in Albany's pretense that redistricting is hard

This Daily News editorial shows just how easy it can be to draw fair district lines.

With a deadline looming to redraw legislative districts based on the 2010 census, Albany must stop skewing the process for political benefit.

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He's a 19-year-old student who lives in Hamburg, Germany, and who whipped up a credible redistricting plan for the state Senate. All he needed was an enthusiasm for American politics, a head for computers and a connection to the Internet

Read the full article here

October 4, 2011
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GOP may add state Senate seat: Rumor

Yournabe.com wrote about the issue of gerrymandering within the GOP. This only furthers the argument for an independing redistricting process, away from partisan temptations to gain majority through unfair means.

Republicans in the state Senate are reportedly thinking of adding an extra seat in the upper chamber when the redrawing of district lines are conducted next year.

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Sens. Toby Stavisky (D-Whitestone) and Michael Gianaris (D-Astoria) said they had “heard rumors” that Republicans were in fact looking to add an extra seat.

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September 29, 2011
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Dilan: GOP is dragging its feet on prison gerrymandering

Capital Confidential wrote Senate GOP once again going back on their word regarding LATFOR. GOP must uphold the law and count prisoners by their home address when it comes to redrawing district lines.

Republicans and Democrats, Assemblymembers and Senators: everyone involved with LATFOR, the legislative entity charged with drawing new voting districts, promised it will comply with a 2010 law to count prisoners at their last known address instead of their jail cells.

Case closed, right? Wrong [].

September 29, 2011
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Inside the Albany gerrymandering machine: How N.Y. pols rig the game

The Daily News wrote about how Senate GOP is trying to manipulate the redistricting process for its own political benefit. This is simply politics at its worst and must not be tolerated.

Here is how Republicans in the state Senate talk about redrawing district lines when they think no one is paying attention:

They loosely refer to black and Latino communities on Long Island as "politically undesirable areas."

They strategize about the best way to "strengthen the Long Island delegation" of nine Republicans.

They angle to create low-population or "light" districts upstate to maximize the number of GOP senators.

And their decision about creating a particular district comes down to a judgment about whether it will be "a Republican pickup."

September 27, 2011
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Redistricting Advocate Discussion The Best Way To Redraw State Lines

Senator Gianaris was on NY1 with Inside City Hall’s Errol Louis and executive director of Common Cause New York, Susan Lerner, to discuss redistricting and the need for an independent redistricting commission.

See the full video interview here.

September 22, 2011
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Senator Krueger Encourages You to Get Involved in Redistricting Process

The State’s Task Force charged with developing a redistricting plan for the State’s Congressional, Senate and Assembly district lines will be holding a hearing in Manhattan this Wednesday, the 21st.

Senator Krueger encourages you to attend this meeting and submit a comment. Involvement is needed to best ensure our democratic process is not tainted by politically-driven gerrymandering.

Click HERE for information on this week’s hearing and how to submit testimony.

September 19, 2011
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Avella, Gianaris call for state independent redistricting

Queens Campaigner wrote about the Queens LATFOR meeting and the need for an independent commission to redraw district lines.

If any teacher wanted to instruct students about gerrymandering, a field trip to state Sen. Tony Avella’s (D-Bayside) district might be a good place to start.

The lawmaker represents an unpopulated, rocky stretch of sand that forms a border around — but does not encroach upon — the neighborhood of Bay Terrace. It connects the neighborhood of Whitestone to the rest of his district by winding around the coast of Little Bay near the Throngs Neck Bridge — but only during low tide.?

September 15, 2011
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Marshall Calls For In-Borough Congressional Districts

Queens Gazette wrote about the redistricting hearing that took place in Queens, in which Senator Gianaris participated:

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Governor Andrew Cuomo has said he would veto any plan that does not meet his criteria for fairness. Cuomo proposed the creation of an independent commission, but legislation introduced in the Assembly was not approved in the senate. LATFOR consists of six members, four from the state legislature and two non-legislators.

September 14, 2011
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