This morning the Democrats and Republicans released their proposed maps for the redrawing of all 100 state House and state Senate districts and one thing is clear from the Democrats' position: they don't care what people had to say at public hearings about their proposed changes. The Commission held 25 public hearings around the state to get feedback on their initial maps, which was supposed to inform the edits made to the initial maps.
They have chopped the state up unrecognizably, almost as if they had been too busy playing Angry Birds during public testimony to have listened to what citizens of Colorado had to say about their district line preferences.
As Lynn Bartels points out in her post today:
Republicans put Grand County into a Western Slope House District, Democrats put it in a district that includes western Boulder County. A number of residents had protested being put with Front Range communities.
Republicans created three Senate seats entirely within Jefferson County. Democrats created two seats within just the county. That also has been an issue for Jefferson County residents.
The public did not want to share the third Senate district with Adams County. That didn’t faze the Democrats who submitted a map with a shared third Senate district.
Democrats also completely ignored the testimony of the public in Southwest Colorado, drawing state House districts that improved their voter registration numbers despite the public's overwhelming opposition to their move.
Per the Durango Herald’s write up of the public hearing in Southwest Colorado:
Opposition was strong, with arguments against having a district where the representative would have to drive over Red Mountain Pass to serve his constituents and the political restructuring of bringing strongly Democratic Telluride into the 59th and moving strongly Republican Cortez out.
Even though the public made clear they didn't want a district chopped up in this manner the Democrats' state House map for HD59 does exactly that.
The Democrats lost the redistricting message war badly. With today's maps it appears they are setting themselves up to lose on reapportionment as well.