Greg and Stace attended today’s Commissioners Court meeting, where to nobody’s surprise the slightly-less-but-still-retrogressive new redistricting plan was unanimously approved. And why shouldn’t it be? It took care of the main, if not the sole, purpose of the task, which was to protect the incumbents from the voters. Stace captured the following exchange, which says it all:
After East End neighborhood activist Elisa Gonzalez made the case for the alternative map (known as Guerra/Jara), Commissioner Jerry Eversole made Gonzalez point out where the four precincts were located because he “couldn’t see” the map.
Where was he going with this? Well, it turned out to be self-serving as he was making the point that he had been drawn out of Precinct 4 and placed in Precinct 2 (the Commissioner has chosen to reside far from his suburban constituents). So, he questioned Gonzalez about it being okay for him to be drawn out, to which Gonzalez stated that “whatever it takes” should be done to ensure representation. So, Eversole being Eversole asked:
“So I’m to give up my job to give you fair representation?”
Yes, it’s all about you, Jerry. Always has been, always will be. Now we get to see what the Justice Department thinks of this. Speaking of which, they formally approved the city’s plan, also to no one’s surprise. The city did pretty much everything right; the fact that no one has filed a suit speaks quite loudly about its success in this process. Nonetheless, DOJ preclearance was a necessary step, and now that it’s been done the election can go on without further complication.
UPDATE: Here’s the Chron story about county redistricting, in which Jack Morman does some whining and we learn that federal judge Vanessa Gilmore has scheduled a pretrial conference for Dec. 2 for the lawsuit that was filed last week.