Opponents Clash At Meeting On New Legislative Districts

Michael Gianaris

February 13, 2012

NY1 discusses a public hearing where good government groups and activists criticized the Senate Republicans' redistricting proposal for being partisan and for undermining leadership in minority communities.

Things got heated Thursday when members of the state's redistricting task force, known as LATFOR, clashed with good government groups and activists at a public hearing.

"Destroying leadership of minority communities is an abhorrent thing, and you're proud of it,” said Roman Hedges of LATFOR.

"You're making your pointed partisan, mapping drawing allegation based on what you believe other organizations have said," said State Senator Michael Nozzolio.

At issue were the task force's proposal for new district lines.

The groups accuse the commission of playing politics.

"You have a legislature that has a very low approval rating. I don't think it is because the voters are so enchanted by everybody," said Susan Lerner of Common Cause New York.

They say the task force carved out districts to protect the Republican's majority in the State Senate and the Democrats' hold on the Assembly, pitting incumbents in races against one another.

For example, Queens Senators Michael Gianaris and Jose Peralta could face off in a primary.

Read the full article here.