Did Minnesota’s Republican Caucus look at possible political gain as a factor when drawing the legislative redistricting maps? A fair question you may say, and worth asking. Representative Melissa Hortman (DFL-Brooklyn Park) obviously thought so too and asked the question of the redistricting bill’s author Sarah Anderson (R-Plymouth). She asked not once, not twice, but eight times and never got a yes or no answer from Anderson.
Hortman wanted to know if Anderson or anyone in the Republican caucus had put together a spreadsheet that analyzed the political competitiveness of the new districts. Nearly each time the question was asked Anderson recited a list of factors for redistricting, but didn’t directly answer Hortman’s question.
Anderson tries to change the subject, asking Hortman where her plan is. Hortman responds that any plan she would put forward would need significant public input and since Republicans released the plan less than 24 hours before this public hearing, it would be impossible to get public input in that short amount of time.
Representative Pat Garofalo (R-Apple Valley/Lakeville/Northfield) is asked the a version of the same question and says he has not seen a spreadsheet analyzing the political competitiveness of the districts. He also tells Hortman she and other DFL members “aren’t earning their pay” because they haven’t created a redistricting plan.