This October, the Minnesota Supreme Court will hear testimony from civic organizations before issuing the congressional and legislative maps that determine Minnesota’s political boundaries for the next decade.
That they’re conducting these hearings despite the fact that the House Redistricting Committee held 13 hearings at the Capitol and 3 hearings around the state is telling.
Shouldn’t the courts be seperated from public opinion? Shouldn’t their job be to apply the laws and the Constitution to the census data?
It isn’t that we shouldn’t hear testimony from civic organizations. It’s that that’s the committees’ responsibility. The courts hearing from civic organizations means that the courts are adding an additional political step to the process.
Politics should be limited to the political branches of government, aka the legislative and executive branches. Judicial proceedings should be limited to making judicial rulings based on the law and Constitution.
Based on where the population shifts happened the past decade, the maps put together by Rep. Sarah Anderson’s committee are quite defensible maps that Gov. Dayton shouldn’t have vetoed. His veto was purely political, designed to keep his base happy.
Politics should be removed from redistricting. Redistricting committees already rely on redistricting software. After the committee hears from the interested civic organizations, the information should be plugged into the redistricting software.
Whatever system is used, the Minnesota Supreme Court shouldn’t be engaged in anything but the law. It shouldn’t engage in hearings. That’s the legislative branch’s responsibility.
It’s time for the courts to stick with their responsibility. It isn’t their responsibility to get involved in conducting political hearings.