More Than 210,000 Signatures Collected On Petitions For Independent Map Amendment

More than One-third of the Way to Goal of 600,000 Signatures to Establish a Non-Partisan Independent Redistricting Commission

Jul 28, 2015, 13:13 ET from Independent Maps

CHICAGO, July 28, 2015 /PRNewswire-USNewswire/ -- More than 210,000 Illinoisans have signed petitions to give voters an opportunity to make the Independent Map Amendment part of the Illinois Constitution and take partisan politics out of the redistricting process.

Dennis FitzSimons, Chair of Independent Maps, announced Tuesday that the non-partisan statewide coalition is more than one-third of the way toward its goal of 600,000 signatures.

"Three months after our petitions first hit the streets, we are more than one-third of the way toward our ambitious goal," FitzSimons said.  "A lot of hard work has gone into collecting the first 210,000 signatures, and there is more ahead of us.  But the Independent Map Amendment is so popular with voters – and volunteers are so enthused and dedicated – that we are very confident that we will easily reach our goal."

Independent Maps has been able to build on a statewide network of thousands of volunteers involved in two prior campaigns for an independent redistricting commission and has the benefit of getting an earlier start than those campaigns.

"Voters don't want legislators drawing the boundaries of their own districts and are eager to sign and help fix this broken system," FitzSimons said.  "Last year, almost 60 percent of elections for the General Assembly were uncontested, and voters were frustrated by the absence of any choice.  The Independent Map Amendment will create a system where voters choose their representatives instead of representatives choosing their voters."

To qualify for the ballot, Independent Maps must collect at least 290,216 valid signatures of registered voters – equal to 8 percent of the total number of votes cast in the most recent election for governor. 

"Because opponents of reform will attempt to disqualify signatures and deny voters the opportunity to reform the system, we want to turn in twice as many signatures as the law requires," said Cynthia Canary, Executive Director of Independent Maps.

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SOURCE Independent Maps