Redistricting 2021

Greetings, faithful 5th LD Democrats! As you may have heard, the Washington State Supreme Court issued an order yesterday in which it authorized the state Redistricting Commission to proceed with finalizing the Legislative and Congressional District maps that the Commission approved in the very late/very early hours of Nov. 15-16. The court concluded that the Commission had “substantially complied” with the deadlines in the redistricting law by voting to approve the new maps just before midnight on Nov. 15 and transmitting the maps to the legislature at 12:13 AM on Nov. 16. Because state law assigns “the primary constitutional and statutory obligation” to adopt district maps to the Commission, the court chose not to exercise its authority to adopt new maps and ordered the Commission to move forward with its approved maps. The court also noted: “The court has not evaluated and does not render any opinion on the plan’s compliance with any statutory and constitutional requirements other than the November 15 deadline.”

The bottom line for us is that, for now, our organization needs to move forward with aligning to the Legislative District map published on the Redistricting Commission’s website. The executive board has begun to analyze the maps and determine which of our PCOs will be affected by the new boundaries. Although the number of affected PCOs is relatively low, we will definitely feel the loss of every PCO who is moving! We are also working with the King County Democrats and Washington State Democrats to identify any PCOs or leaders who are moving into our district.

Please know that our executive board is committed to taking the time to celebrate the PCOs who are moving out of our district, to support their transition to their new LD organizations, and to welcome new PCOs into our team. We will provide more details soon about how all this will work.

A final point: We may not be at the end of the story on redistricting yet. As noted above, the Washington Supreme Court did not address the legality of the district maps under the Voting Rights Act or any other laws, and it is possible that lawsuits will be filed challenging aspects of the maps. We will continue to monitor those developments and will respond to any changes as they occur. But for now, we need to move forward with the maps as currently adopted.

Onward and upward, Fightin’ 5th! Thank you for all you do for our community!