Opinion ~ Letter to the editor

January 31, 2022

The majority in Congress is on the line as Republican leadership is set on giving away a seat to Cleaver, Pelosi and Democrats for the next 10 years.

Call or email your State Senator. Tell them to vote “No” on any 6-2 map and to give us a 7-1 map. Their contact is at senate.mo.gov. Personally I would be sure to tell them you won’t put up with the betrayal of a “Yes” vote on the 6-2 map and instead you will be looking forward to supporting someone else in the primary.

Call or email your State Rep as the bill for the map will probably be back in the House next week. Tell them to vote “No” on any 6-2 map and to give us a 7-1 map. Their contact is at house.mo.gov.

Call Governor Parsons and tell him to veto any 6-2 map that makes it to his desk. His number is (573) 751-3222 .

Lots of “reasons” to give away the 5th District to the Democrats have been given and sound reasonable when first heard. As Proverbs 18:17 says, “Any story sounds true until someone tells the other side and sets the record straight.”  Let’s set the record straight.

“The courts will reject a duly passed 7-1 congressional redistricting map and on their own will redraw a 5-3 map.”

FALSE. If any court rejects a duly passed map it is sent back to the legislature for another try.

“With the February 22nd filing deadline we need to hurry up and get this 6-2 map passed.”

MISLEADING. The ending date for filing, March 29th, is 2 months away. In fact, instead of hurrying to pass a 6-2 map, how about hurrying up to pass a 7-1 map?

“The Voting Rights Act will be used in a Federal lawsuit to reject a 7-1 map.”

FALSE. In Missouri, Section 2 of the VRA applies, but it only applies to the 1st District in St. Louis. The 5th District is NOT a minority-majority district, and the VRA does not require the 5th to become a minority-majority district.

“If we touch the district of minority Congressman Cleaver with a partisan gerrymander, Eric Holder’s National Democratic Redistricting Committee will file a lawsuit in Missouri state court and will get the 7-1 map thrown out based on racial discrimination grounds.”

FALSE. Former attorney general Holder can file lawsuits, but it does not mean there is a legal basis for a successful lawsuit. If the courts started to rule that any district with a minority representative could never be altered in a way that a candidate of another race or ethnicity could be elected then election to Congress would turn into an affirmative action law.

“Districts have to be equal in population down to the person.”

FALSE. In a 2012 ruling, SCOTUS allowed a population variance of up to 0.79% . In the 1962 Priesler v. Hearnes case the Missouri Supreme Court allowed a 0.2% population variance.

It is up to us to keep our Republic by taking action to protect it today.

Jacob Turk, Lee’s Summit