Scott Walker: Sununu was right to veto redistricting bill

  • Walker

For the Monitor
Published: 8/22/2019 9:30:21 AM
Modified: 8/22/2019 9:30:10 AM

Gov. Chris Sununu took an oath to support the constitution of the state of New Hampshire. And unlike many politicians these days, he actually kept his promise to the people.

Out-of-state interests led by former federal attorney general Eric Holder pushed for legislation in New Hampshire (House Bill 706) that would give a clear partisan advantage to Democrats. Despite claims from Holder that his group was fighting for “fair maps” and against “gerrymandering,” the form that they filed with the IRS says that their mission is to “favorably position Democrats for redistricting.”

Holder and his liberal allies have raised and spent at least $250 million this decade on litigation, ballot measures and data to aid their attempts to gerrymander people like Speaker Nancy Pelosi into permanent control of the U.S. House of Representatives. For them, it is all about power.

Instead of power, Gov. Sununu focused on the state constitution. He was right to veto House Bill 706. In his veto message, the governor correctly noted that: “The New Hampshire Constitution directs the Legislature to determine legislative and Executive Council districts. The drafters of our constitution were wise to vest such authority in the people’s elected representatives who are accountable to the voters every two years. The members of the commission proposed by House Bill 706 would be unelected and unaccountable to the voters. Legislators should not abrogate their responsibility to the voters and delegate authority to an unelected and unaccountable commission selected by political party bosses.”

Gov. Sununu went on to state: “We should all be proud that issues of gerrymandering are extremely rare in New Hampshire. Our current redistricting process is fair and representative of the people and of our state.”

New Hampshire has a strong tradition of representation that is close to the people. Passing the responsibility of redistricting off to an unelected and unaccountable body is at odds with that fine tradition. Gov. Sununu was wise to veto the bill.

As a former governor, I know how important it is to uphold the Constitution and to be willing to make tough decisions. Today, I am proud to be involved with the National Republican Redistricting Trust as we are fighting for clean, concise and – most importantly – constitutionally sound legislative districts across the country. We firmly believe in upholding the U.S. Constitution and each of the state constitutions.

Eric Holder and his allies are pushing for activist judges and unelected commissions to draw the legislative lines. As they stated on their IRS form, their mission is to “favorably position Democrats for redistricting.”

In contrast, Gov. Sununu took bold action to uphold the New Hampshire Constitution and to keep the process in the hands of elected officials who are accountable to the people of the Granite State. It is refreshing to see an elected official uphold their oath to support the constitution.

(Scott Walker is the former governor of Wisconsin and the finance chairman of the National Republican Redistricting Trust.)

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