Smith wants citizens to draw the lines

By on Monday, October 4th, 2021 in Columbia Basin News More Top Stories

HEPPNER – Oregon Rep. Greg Smith (R-Heppner) and other minority party members are convinced that the Democrats of the Oregon Legislature rigged the congressional and legislative districts in a way to ensure their party remains in the majority over the coming decade.

The last time lines were drawn in 2001, the Republicans were in the majority of the Oregon House of Representatives, and Democrats there staged a five-day walkout over redistricting. Smith said it doesn’t have to be that way.

“Legislators should not be drawing their own boundaries,” he said. “For those in the majority, those lines are drawn to their benefit; and those in the minority, you do your best to just hold on.”

He thinks the Oregon Legislature should back out of the business of redistricting.

“I’m a strong advocate for an independent legislative commission made up of citizens from throughout Oregon and have them draw the maps,” he said.