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Pogemiller Delivers on Redistricting Reform; SF 182 Passes Senate Floor Vote

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While the thunder of Governor Tim Pawlenty's new unallotment strategy drew all the attention of Capitol watchers on Thursday and Friday, the Senate, under the leadership of DFL Majority Leader Larry Pogemiller (SD59-Minneapolis), passed a redistricting bill that will perhaps have an even greater consequence on Minnesota politics than any budget bill line-item veto or unallotment.

The Senate passed SF 182 by a 39 to 28 margin, and the legislation, also authored by Pogemiller, is now referred to the House's State and Local Government Operations Reform, Technology and Elections Committee, chaired by DFL Rep. Gene Pelowski (31A-Winona).

Pogemiller's bill is championed by former GOP Gov. Arne Carlson and former Democratic Vice President Walter Mondale who sit on the Advisory Board of the Center for the Study of Politics and Governance's bipartisan Minnesota Redistricting Project at the Humphrey Institute. The legislation empowers the majority and minority leaders in the Senate and House with each selecting a retired appellate or district court judge to form a redistricting commission, with those four judges selecting a fifth judge. All of the judges must never have previously served in a political party designated or party endorsed position.

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Previous post: A Historical Snapshot of Minnesota's Legislative Special Sessions
Next post: Republicans in Competitive Districts Opposed Pogemiller Redistricting Bill; Safe GOPers Supported Reform

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Remains of the Data

No Free Passes: States With 2 Major Party Candidates in Every US House Race

Indiana has now placed candidates from both major parties on the ballot in a nation-best 189 consecutive U.S. House races, with New Hampshire, Minnesota, Idaho, and Montana also north of 100 in a row.

Political Crumbs

Gubernatorial Highs and Lows

Two sitting governors currently hold the record for the highest gubernatorial vote ever received in their respective states by a non-incumbent: Republican Matt Mead of Wyoming (65.7 percent in 2010) and outgoing GOPer Dave Heineman of Nebraska (73.4 percent in 2006). Republican Gary Herbert of Utah had not previously won a gubernatorial contest when he notched a state record 64.1 percent for his first victory in 2010, but was an incumbent at the time after ascending to the position in 2009 after the early departure of Jon Huntsman. Meanwhile, two sitting governors hold the record in their states for the lowest mark ever recorded by a winning gubernatorial candidate (incumbent or otherwise): independent-turned-Democrat Lincoln Chafee of Rhode Island (36.1 percent in 2010) and Democrat Terry McAuliffe of Virginia (47.8 percent in 2013).


An Idaho Six Pack

Two-term Idaho Republican Governor Butch Otter only polled at 39 percent in a recent PPP survey of the state's 2014 race - just four points ahead of Democratic businessman A.J. Balukoff. Otter's low numbers reflect his own struggles as a candidate (witness his weak primary win against State Senator Russ Fulcher) combined with the opportunity for disgruntled Idahoans to cast their votes for one of four third party and independent candidates, who collectively received the support of 12 percent of likely voters: Libertarian John Bujak, the Constitution Party's Steve Pankey, and independents Jill Humble and Pro-Life (aka Marvin Richardson). The six candidate options in a gubernatorial race sets an all-time record in the Gem State across the 46 elections conducted since statehood. The previous high water mark of five candidates was reached in seven previous cycles: 1902, 1904, 1908, 1912, 1914, 1966, and 2010.


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