Just last week during an appearance on WTOP’s “Ask The Governor” segment, Governor Northam said redistricting was a “legislative process.” However, when it appeared Republicans may garner bipartisan support for a fair and constitutional map, Governor Northam announced he no longer believes redistricting should be left up to the legislature, rather he wants federal judges appointed by President Obama to draw a redistricting map to deliver a Democratic majority in the House of Delegates.
“That is a legislative process, that I will let play out but at the end of the day, at the end of the day what we need in Virginia is a map that is fair and that is constitutional. So, if such a map hits my desk for signature I will certainly consider it…the sooner we can get the legislature to work on a map that is fair and constitutional, the better for Virginia.”-Governor Ralph Northam (9/26/2018)
This stands in sharp contrast with what Governor Northam said yesterday.“… the federal court is best positioned to construct a remedial districting plan. Given this conviction, I must unequivocally state that I will veto House Bill 7003 should it reach my desk.”- Governor Ralph Northam Press Release (10/02/2018)The comment even drew backlash from those in his own party. Meanwhile, Speaker Cox reiterated his desire for the legislature to fulfill its constitutional duty in a bipartisan manner versus asking federal judges to do the job for them.“We’ve expressed our willingness to work on House Bill 7002, 7003 or any other map so long as it complies with the Court order, is politically-neutral, and adheres to traditional redistricting criteria. Our offer still stands.” Speaker Kirk Cox Press Release (10/02/2018)