To the voters and advocates who are disappointed with the lack of action on redistricting reform at the SC Statehouse – may we ask you to temporarily direct your attention to Congress?
For the second session in a row, a bill has been introduced in Congress that would modernize our elections with a series of election and voting reforms that would truly strengthen our democracy. The League worked behind the scenes to influence the language of the H.R. 1, the For the People Act, including a push to include Same Day Registration. This bill passed out of the House in the last session, but the Senate declined to debate it. The outcome could be different this time if we show a groundswell of support.
Included in this bill is a requirement that states use independent redistricting commissions to draw Congressional district lines (something that state legislators often do themselves, drawing maps that benefit the politicians, not the voters.) That means this bill could end gerrymandering at the national level!
This is an opportunity to make our elections free, fair, and accessible. It would make access to voting easier, while ensuring secure elections. There are provisions for campaign finance reform, Federal Election Commission reform, automatic voter registration, and standardization of redistricting criteria. You can see a summary of the bill here or the full text here.
Your advocacy right now is important. Use the above link to ask your U.S. Representative to pass H.R. 1, then call Senator Lindsay Graham and Senator Tim Scott and let them know you want the For the People Act to be a priority. (There is a companion bill in the Senate, S. 1.) There should be bipartisan support for making our election system free, fair, and equitable.