A faithful reader of this blog emailed me copies of Common Cause Minnesota’s redistricting maps. As you’ll see, Common Cause Minnesota’s maps expose them as political hatchetmen doing the DFL’s bidding. Here’s Common Cause Minnesota’s statewide redistricting map:

Here’s a tighter shot of Common Cause Minnesota’s map. It focuses on the southern half of the state:

It’s apparent that Common Cause MN isn’t nonpartisan or transparent. The fact that Common Cause Minnesota didn’t publish these maps and displayed prominently on their website says everything that needs be said.

Even if Common Cause MN denies ownership of these maps, the truth is that the maps didn’t create themselves. Common Cause Minnesota’s maps fits with their goals:

The campaign seeks to create a better redistricting process in Minnesota that uses the following principles:

1. The redistricting process should be independent and nonpartisan, to minimize the influence of elected officials and political parties in creating districts to their own political advantage.
2. The redistricting process should be transparent to the public.
3. The redistricting body should provide data, tools, and opportunities for the public to have direct input into the specific plans under consideration.
4. The redistricting process must be reflective of the diversity of the state, especially racial and ethnic diversity.
5. Redistricting plan should preserve communities of interest wherever possible, where communities of interest are groups of people concentrated in a geographic area that share similar interests and priorities, whether social, cultural, ethnic, racial, economic, or religious.

The maps attempt to protect DFL incumbents while pitting John Kline and Michele Bachmann against each other. That isn’t a serious map. That’s an insult to Minnesota’s voters. They left Keith Ellison’s, Betty McCollum’s, Tim Walz’s and Colin Peterson’s districts in droves. Isn’t it interesting that Keith Ellison’s, Betty McCollum’s, Tim Walz’s and Colin Peterson’s districts are the districts are the ones that Common Cause Minnesota’s map protects?

Isn’t it interesting that Common Cause Minnesota’s map pits John Kline and Michele Bachmann against each other while creating an open seat to the west of the Twin Cities metro?

What’s even more interesting is that Common Cause Minnesota’s map draws 2 of Tim Walz’s likeliest challengers into the same district as John Kline and Michele Bachmann.

Study these maps. Memorize them. They’re what political hatchet jobs look like.

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28 Responses to “LFR EXCLUSIVE: Common Cause MN’s Unpublished Maps”

  • Gary Gross says:

    Thanks for your commentary, Andy. During the RightOnline Conference, I got to meet James O’Keefe, the man who helped, along with Hannah Giles, take down ACORN. I said that citizen journalists were the investigative reporters of today because the big city newspaper types don’t do that stuff anymore. He immediately agreed. So did Michelle Malkin.

    Thankfully, there are lots of citizen journalists out there reporting the truth. Consider this an offshoot of the TEA Party movement.

  • #6 says:

    I’m surprised they didn’t put Cravaack into the 2nd district. It’s still a crazy map, though.

  • Mike Dean says:


    If they are unpublished, how did you get them. Do I need to call the FBI to report that you hacked the Common Cause computers?

    No, because you got them online where anyone can see them. In fact, I tweeted out a link to these maps several times over the last month.

    Also, they are not Common Cause maps. They are my own and the file clearly states that it is mine. I would be happy to engage you in a debate about the redistricting. The rule is that you have to actually back up your statements with actual facts. Just because you believe something in your gut does not mean that it is true.

    But if you want to have a REAL discussion about redistricting, I am game.

  • Eric says:

    Note that they lumped the four most conservative counties (Sherburne, Wright, Carver, and Scott) into one district too. The liberals know they’ll lose these areas, so why not pack as many conservatives into one district as possible to give them a better chance in the surrounding districts.

  • Jerad says:

    Are you saying…

    1. The maps don’t reflect racial and ethnic diversity of the state,
    2. Any map that favors racial and ethnic diversity advantages Democrats, or
    3. That the map does reflect that diversity, but that diversity could be reflected in with a different map that puts Republicans at less of a disadvantage?

  • Gary Gross says:

    Mike, Care to share the links to those maps? I went through your websites & didn’t find them. Lord knows I tried.

    If you “want to have a REAL discussion about redistricting”, why haven’t you accepted Mitch Berg’s invitation to appear on his show? It’s been a standing invitation for over a year. He said that he’s tried directly contacting you a bunch of times to talk about appearing on his show to talk about stories Common Cause MN is involved in. Why so bashful?

    Mike, what warped thinking did you use to draw a map that protects the 4 DFL seats, pits John Kline & Michele Bachmann against each other & creates an open seat in MN-6? What part of the population movements informs your thinking?

    Finally, why is your partisan organization spreading lies about Minnesota redistricting “has been done out of the public eye, without meaningful public input, and used to dilute the voting power of communities of color”? Why is DTL Minnesota saying that when the 2001 Minnesota Supreme Court statement talks about the hearings they held & the testimony that was given? Moreover, what proof do you have that Minnesota’s redistricting process was “used to dilute the voting power of communities of color”?

  • Gary Gross says:

    I’m saying that the Minnesota Surpreme Court said that population shifts should be the primary consideration, not racial & ethnic diversity. That isn’t my edict. That’s the opinion of the Minnesota Surpreme Court. They said that diversity can be a consideration. It just shouldn’t be the primary consideration. For the record, I think that’s the appropriate disposition.

  • LadyLogician says:

    Mike – I have to ask WTF were you thinking if it was not partisan gamesmanship? You put 4 completely dis-similar counties (Scott, Carver, Wright and Sherburne) into an “open district” , you split Anoka county into thirds and you lump 4 more totally dis-similar counties into your redrawn 2nd district and you say that is not partisan???? I’m sorry, but if it is not partisan then it is totally stupid…and I know you are not totally stupid.

    What were you using as guidelines? What population shifts were ignored to protect CD 4 & 5? Again I have to ask, if you were not doing the DFL’s work, then what in heaven’s name were you thinking because this map makes no sense at all!


  • LadyLogician says:

    Oh and another question for you Mike. In one breath you say…

    “If they are unpublished, how did you get them. Do I need to call the FBI to report that you hacked the Common Cause computers?

    No, because you got them online where anyone can see them….”

    …and in another breath you say…

    “Also, they are not Common Cause maps. They are my own and the file clearly states that it is mine.”…

    …So which is it Mike? If they are your personal maps, why are they published on Common Cause’s website? For there is certainly NOTHING on the maps above to indicate ownership of said maps….unless it is written in invisible ink…


  • Mike Dean says:

    You guys just make shit-up. I would waste all my time just responding to you half baked ideas. If you don’t like my map, that’s fine. Draw your own here: http://www.drawminnesota.org/

  • Mike Dean says:

    All the maps are publicly available here: https://districtbuilder.drawminnesota.org/

    You just need to login to see what other maps people have created. Logging in is free and takes 2 minutes.

  • Mike Dean says:

    Scott, Carver, Wright and Sherburne is where all the growth has been in the last ten years as ex-urban communities of Minneapolis. That’s why they deserve to be their own district. Sherburne has more in common with Carver than it does with Washington county.

  • Mike Dean says:

    The districts in my maps have equal population. You all need to start drawing your own maps. Then you can criticize.

    The GOP caucus maps “protected” the 4th and 5th. The courts have traditionally recognized those districts as distinct communities of interest.

  • LadyLogician says:

    What did we make up Mike? What was said here that is untrue? Come on now, YOU can’t just make stuff up and get away with it…..


  • LadyLogician says:

    What did we make up Mike? What was said here that is untrue? Come on now, YOU can’t just make stuff up and get away with it…..


  • LadyLogician says:

    Scott and Carver Counties have more in common (population and city make up) with Dakota County then they do with Wright and Sherburn. Their/our needs are different. Scott, Dakota and Carver counties are made up of mostly bedroom communities like Shakopee, Burnsville, Prior Lake and Chaska. Savage is partly in Scott County and partly in Dakota so your map divides the that city in two. Meanwhile Wright and Sherburn are more rural in their make up. They have nothing in common.


  • Legal Eagle says:

    New code phrase to watch out for from Mike et. al: “Communities of Interest”. Read Cox v Larios in Georgia for similar tactics Mike and his gerrymander gangs are trying to bring to MN redistricting:


    It failed there, and it will fail in Minnesota.

  • Gary Gross says:

    Thanks Eagle. I’ll certainly look into that.

  • Mike Dean says:

    This is what is made up:

    1. That this is a Common Cause map.
    Common Cause has released a tool that lets any individual draw a map. That website currently has 12 maps that are being shared publicly. Gary choose one of those maps and claimed that it was a Common Cause map. the file name on that map did not say Common Cause. Just because someone created a map with our tool, does not make it a Common Cause map.
    2. That Gary and his source uncovered the maps
    The link to the map had been sent out via tweets numerous times. And was accessible to anyone drawing on the website. All open and accessible. There was nothing secret about this.
    3. The map shown above does not create 4 safe DFL districts
    The map you are looking at creates 2 safe DFL districts and 1 safe GOP districts. The 5 other districts are all competitive (within 8 percentage points).
    4. That these maps protect Congressman Walz
    The 1st CD stays almost exactly the same as it is. The population changes do not require the district to change. You are arguing that this map manipulates the district by keeping it the same. That does not make any sense.

  • Terry Stone says:

    From which of the 5 copies of this state’s redistricting software did Mike Dean pirate the software for his alleged map creation?

    Perhaps he bought a copy. In the spirit of transparency, perhaps he could provide a receipt for the software.

  • walter hanson says:

    Hey Mike I have an interesting question. If your logic is that the four fastest growing counties have something in common then the cities of Minneapolis and Saint Paul have something in common. They are urban city districts unlike the suburbs needing one type of rep. If you combine the cities of Minneapolis and Saint Paul together that it the population of one district, is a rational line, and it even qualifies as a minority district.

    I count on you redrawing those maps taking into account that great idea.

    Walter Hanson
    Minneapolis, MN

  • Gary Gross says:

    Mr. Dean, That explanation doesn’t pass the laugh test. Central Minnesota deserves its own district. Northern Minnesota deserves its own district. Pitting 2 incumbents against each other? That smacks of fairness? Get serious.

    The legislative map that Gov. Dayton vetoed makes lots of sense. The districts are competitive with the exception of MN-4 & MN-5.

    Finally, the Surpreme Court thought that the current map was right by the law & right by the population shifts. What makes you think that you can do better?

  • Gary Gross says:

    Are you saying that only a liberal is capable of representing minorities? God, that smacks of bigotry. How about pitting Michele Bachmann against Betty McCollum? How about giving part of McCollum’s district to Keith Ellison?

    By the way, you still didn’t answer what proof you have showing that Minnesota’s redistricting process has been “used to dilute the voting power of communities of color.” Is that because you were lying about that? Or just parroting what the NAACP told you to write?

  • LadyLogician says:

    Mike – going by your own statement…

    “Do I need to call the FBI to report that you hacked the Common Cause computers?”

    Then you tacitly confirmed that they ARE CC’s maps so your fallacy #1 is itself made up.

    You CLAIM that these maps were published and have yet to provide a link to show that Gary’s claim is wrong. You have it in YOUR POWER to prove him wrong and you don’t. Strike 2 against you….

    Statement 3 – if your group were REALLY about fair representation there would be NO (zip, zero, zip, zilch, none pick your word) SAFE SEATS. They would all be competitive!

    Statement 4 is disingenuous at best. Walz’s district was left alone while everyone elses was radically changed. Why wouldn’t people presume that you are protect him by maintaining the status quo?

    Sorry Mike – your defenses still do not pass the smell test.


  • Joseph says:

    Since Mr. Dean will not, here is the link to the Mike Dean named plan:

    It says that mpdean is the author.

    When compared to the current map, https://districtbuilder.drawminnesota.org/districtmapping/plan/1/view/ it seems that only CD 2 and 6 were the only districts really changed. Does seem to me the Mr. Dean want to make safe districts for the DFL.

  • walter hanson says:

    Mike apparently doesn’t want to talk to us anymore. I hear Gary is going to be debating him tonight. Gary ask him about the point I made. If he honestly feels that the four fast growing counties have something in common than obviously Minneapolis and Saint Paul shoud be lumped together because they are urban districts needing one type of rep while the suburan voters both districts have been stealing to get to a balanced population needs a different type of rep.

    Walter Hanson
    Minneapolis, MN

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