Pennsylvania watchdog groups and political leaders expect the state’s primary elections to be held on April 24 and based on old legislative district maps, as moving the primary at this late date could bring confusion to state elections and the presidential primary.
The state Legislative Reapportionment Commission — which is charged with developing legislative district maps — this week held its first meeting since the state Supreme Court threw out maps based on the 2010 census, reported the Philadelphia Inquirer
In December, the state court ordered the commission to come up with new legislative district maps, after determining that the group, while trying to give all districts equal population, had ignored state constitutional requirements that districts be compact and municipalities not be broken up.
If new maps can’t be drawn up and approved soon enough, the primary will have to be held based on old legislative maps, which Republican House leaders claim are unconstitutional because they are based on outdated population figures.
The commission is to meet again next Tuesday in Harrisburg, when it may give preliminary approval to a new set of district legislative maps, which would trigger two 30-day comment periods. The timeline would bring the maps’ final approval to just a few days before the April 24 primaries.
“We’ve got to move on and we’ll go with old districts. The courts have spoken," state GOP chairman Rob Gleason said. “Some may feel improperly represented now, but the next election is just two years away.”
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