To the Editor:

Redistricting is upon us. Our democratic process requires that every 10 years, after the federal census, congressional and state house electoral boundaries are redrawn to even up the number of people in each district. This is a huge job often fraught with concern about political shenanigans, and at least in Minnesota, often ultimately settled by judges, though the job is supposed to be done by legislators.

One thing the good people of Plymouth may not realize is that Rep. Ginny Klevorn, who represents a goodly proportion of the city, was vice-chair of the Minnesota House redistricting committee. The process that Rep. Klevorn and Chairperson Mary Murphy (District 3B, in the Arrowhead) developed was probably unique in the level of transparency and openness to public input. The committee first solicited public opinion, then drew up the principles by which the process would work, then subjected those principles to more public review, then started drawing maps, and asked for public review of those maps, and further modified them based on people’s input. For the first time, redistricting treated both school districts and tribal boundaries as equal to other boundaries in creating districts. This allows people to be members of more coherent communities, so when you and your neighbors go to fight city hall, have a talk with the school board, or write your representative, your participation is easier and makes more sense.

Good government – and government can be good – requires good people doing a good job in a transparent process that is aggressively receptive to public scrutiny and input. Regardless of what party you are in, or what map you like, please take a moment to thank our representative for her tireless and thoughtful attention to this important part of our democracy.

Greg Laden


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