Democratic lawmakers in Albany are never satisfied: Their party already has a firm lock on the key levers of power, yet last week they moved to solidify that power even more — via an amendment to the state Constitution.
And because they control both houses of the Legislature, the measure sailed through easily, with barely any public input.
The amendment deals with the redistricting process — how new maps, based on the Census, must be drawn and approved. And the changes essentially favor Dems and tie Republican hands, so Democrats will be free to draw lines to their advantage.
Under the plan, minority parties would lose their ability to block partisan district lines. The number of Senate districts would be locked at 63 (the current number) to preserve the Dems’ edge and head off any new GOP-leaning districts. It also requires that residents, regardless of immigration status, be counted — a clear bid to create yet more Dem-leaning districts.
“The will of the people and public interest are far less important to New York Democrats than their own self-preservation,” howls Assemblyman Will Barclay. They’re “obsessed with extending their misguided, one-party rule that drives up taxes, drives up crime and drives New Yorkers away.”
The amendment needs to be passed again next year when a “new” Legislature meets, before going to voters in November 2021.
If it’s OK’d, Republicans could be out of power for a long time after the next redistricting. And bet on Dems to keep using their power to preserve it even more.
The likely bottom line: Say good-bye to democracy and hello to dysfunctional one-party rule in New York. Perhaps for good.