CHICAGO — A group that’s led an effort to change how political boundaries are drawn in Illinois asked the state Supreme Court on Wednesday to reconsider its ruling that a voter referendum on the issue is unconstitutional.
The Illinois Supreme Court ruled 4-3 last week that the Independent Maps coalition’s ballot initiative seeking to give legislative mapmaking power to an independent commission instead of lawmakers didn’t meet constitutional muster. That made the measure ineligible to appear on the state’s November ballot.
However, justices didn’t rule out redistricting for future ballots. It’s the second failed attempt to overhaul redistricting by petition in two years.
The Aug. 25 ruling fell the day before an election deadline to certify fall ballots. The group needs four votes for a rehearing. They collected about 563,000 signatures for the measure.
Coalition chairman Dennis FitzSimons says the justices in the majority “were wrong and inconsistent in their reasoning.”
“More than 563,000 Illinois voters signed Independent Map Amendment petitions, and we owe it to them and thousands of volunteers across the state to make every possible effort to convince the court that the amendment deserves to be placed before voters in November,” FitzSimons said.
On Tuesday, former Illinois Gov. Pat Quinn pitched a redistricting plan that he said would meet constitutional muster because it’s simpler. He suggest an 11-member commission that the state Supreme Court appoints should draw political boundaries.