If you live in Kentucky, speak up now or forever hold your peace.
Republicans are removing a democratically-elected official from her Senate seat NOW through their redistricting map.
The Republican-controlled House, with the help of Democrats (!!!WTH??), have passed the Senate redistricting bill that disenfranchises Lexington in the state Senate for the next two years (Kentucky's 2nd largest city) and (effectively) kicks Senator Kathy Stein out of office.
This gerrymandered redistricting bill destroys two of Kentucky's best Democrats, Kathy Stein and Walter Blevins. It's a shock to see what has been done to them.
Not only was Lexington's Senator stolen from her constituents, but Blevins' district was completely destroyed as was the former District 4 belonging to Dorsey Ripley. The District 4 territory of Henderson County was mushed into one single District 6 now, then the Republicans decided to throw the cut-out District 4 all the way over to land on Lexington, KY. Dorsey Ripley will never retain the Lexington seat since he isn't from here. That's just how it cuts in Kentucky.
This gerrymandered map should never have passed muster with the Democrats. We lose three very good Democratic members and their seats.
The bill is headed to Governor Steve Beshear for his signature... or he can send this nasty unconstitutional bill back for repair.
The number for Beshear's office is 502-564-2611.
It looks like the Republicans are stealing my Senator from my city of Lexington and sending her packing to the
Northern Kentucky suburbs of Cinci-tucky northeastern rural region of Kentucky along the Ohio River far away from Lexington. She doesn't live there, they didn't vote for her and she's a HELLUVA Senator. Progressive to the bone.
In her place, these Republican cowards have put an official from the far western corner of the state in charge of Kentucky's 2nd largest city. He lives 4 hours away from Lexington. His district is remote, conservative and rural.
Lexington can NOT put up with this and we will not give up Kathy Stein without a hellacious fight.
From Barefoot and Progressive:
David Williams and Damon Thayer have physically removed Kathy Stein’s 13th District seat, sending her to northeastern Kentucky to represent people she does not know.
In turn, Williams and Thayer are sending a Senator from Henderson – THREE AND A HALF HOURS FROM LEXINGTON — to represent 90,000 people in Fayette County who’ve never voted for or heard of their new “elected” official.
Just when we thought the redistricting process couldn’t get any more ridiculous or offensive, the Senate ups and outdoes the House with a plan that would leave the heart of Kentucky’s second-largest city without an elected senator for two years.
Yep, it’s the revenge of Senate President David Williams, who was rejected 3-1 by Lexington voters in his failed bid for governor last year and is now paying them back.
The Republican-controlled Senate State and Local Government Committee has approved a redistricting plan that would move Democratic Sen. Kathy Stein’s District 13, which now includes the University of Kentucky and environs, to Mason and Lewis counties in northeastern Kentucky.
The Lexington district would become Senate District 4, which is now located in western Kentucky, and for the next two years would be represented by Sen. Dorsey Ridley, a Democrat from Henderson.
Not much more to say... I have to get back to work.
Wanted to get this news out there.
[UPDATE I: MAPS for clarification.]
Kathy Stein's old District 13 was in the heart of Lexington. Snapshot relative to the location of Stein's old District 13 within the state.
Closeup of the old District 13 includes most of the core of Lexington including the university.
Now, the newly drawn Republican gerrymander has thrown Kathy Stein and District 13 far out into the remote rural region along the Ohio River.
And, having removed District 13 from its urban core, the Republicans have drawn a new State Senate District map with the newly minted "District 4" (which formerly was four hours away).
If you look closely, you can see a #4 in the middle of the state (lightish teal color). That is the newly drawn district for Lexington with its newly-appointed non-resident State Senator Dorsey Ridley. To the right and up toward the NE is the newly drawn District 13 where the Republicans threw Lexington's Senator Kathy Stein.
That new District 4 representing the city of Lexington now has Dorsey Ridley as its Senator. Dorsey Ridley hails from Henderson County in the remote western rural region of Kentucky where the Ohio River soon meets the Mississippi.
[UPDATE II: Integrated maps so readers can quickly see these changes]
Lexington is outraged about this crass gerrymandering and spiteful payback by the Republicans.
[UPDATE III: Beshear signed, sealed, delivered the egregious gerrymander to the Republicans. ]
Maybe Jesus on his dinosaur hand-delivered it? With a wink.
Oh, and Beshear's taxpayer boondoggle Noah's Ark Creationist Theme Park is sinking. Like a rock. Who could have predicted that?
As Paulo Coelho said, You drown not by falling into a river, but by staying in it.