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CCBA Feature
Continued from page 31

draw the district lines in an open and fair manner. The
commission would be composed of 11 willing citizens
randomly chosen from a vetted pool of registered voters,
four of whom are registered with the largest political
party, four of whom are registered with the secondlargest party, and three of whom are unaffiliated with
either of the largest political parties.
The process for redistricting would be transparent,
with opportunity for public input, and the commission
would not be permitted to consider prior election results,
the party affiliations of voters or the addresses of
any individual.

Time is Critical
To accomplish these common-sense reforms, the
Pennsylvania Constitution must be amended. In order
to do so, a bill establishing the citizens commission must
pass both the Pennsylvania House and the Senate in two
consecutive legislative sessions and then be approved by
voters. Both SB22 and HB722 have been introduced and


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James C. Schwartzman, Esq.

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*	 Former	Chairman,	Disciplinary	Board	of	the	Supreme	
Court	of	Pennsylvania
*	 Former	Chairman,	Continuing	Legal	Education	Board	
of	the	Supreme	Court	of	Pennsylvania
*	 Former	Chairman,	Supreme	Court	of	Pennsylvania	
Interest	on	Lawyers	Trust	Account	Board
*	 Former	Federal	Prosecutor
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32 | New Matter

referred to committee. Each is waiting to be scheduled
for action by the committees' chairs. Time is of the
essence as the decennial census, and hence redistricting,
is only a few short years away.
As lawyers, we are well-positioned to advocate for
passage of redistricting reform by getting involved in
the process, making our views known to our legislators
and spreading the word about this crucial issue. Tired of
partisan extremism and bickering? Don't just complain,
get involved! Redistricting reform, a bipartisan cause,
is a vitally important first step to ending the fanatical
partisanship that has gripped our state and country
and created virtual gridlock in our legislatures. Our
democratic system deserves better. It is time to return the
power to the people of the Commonwealth and to make
our political system, once again, the envy of the world.



Table of Contents for the Digital Edition of ChesterNewMatterWinter2017

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