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OneVirginia2021 announces statewide Leadership Council

OneVirginia2021Political and business leaders across Virginia highlight the bipartisan Leadership Council backing a constitutional amendment to create the commonwealth’s first Citizens Redistricting Commission.

The nonpartisan redistricting advocacy group OneVirginia2021 announced the statewide Leadership Council today in support of SJ274 (Hanger-Locke).

The 93-member Leadership Council includes former U.S. Senator John Warner; former Governors Charles Robb and Linwood Holton; former Congressman Tom Davis; former state Senators John Chichester and Charles Hawkins; Mayors Kenny Alexander and Levar Stoney; Virginia Libertarian Party Chair Bo Brown; local government officials Jeff McKay and Phyllis Randall; and Virginia business leaders Eva Hardy, Steve and Kathie Markel, Bill and Pam Royall, Charlie Pryor, Jim Ukrop and John O. “Dubby” Wynne.

“This is an issue that all elected officials should be able to support, no matter their ideological leanings,” said Steve Markel. “This constitutional amendment will leave a lasting legacy in Virginia for generations to come.”

Now under consideration by the 2019 General Assembly, SJ274 follows recommendations drafted by a bipartisan panel of former legislators and election law experts. The panel proposed that Virginia amend its constitution to establish a redistricting process that is transparent, independent of the legislature and guided by clear rules that favor no political party and respect city and county boundaries.

Wyatt Durrette, a former member of the General Assembly and former Republican candidate for governor, chaired the drafting committee and is also a member of the Leadership Council.

“The membership of the Leadership Council shows that the fight to end gerrymandering in Virginia knows no political party,” said Durrette. “Elected officials from both sides of the aisle and business leaders from across the Commonwealth know that creating an independent commission to draw fair district lines is the right thing to do to uphold the true spirit of Virginia’s representative democracy.”

The process by which Virginia’s Constitution is amended requires approval in two annual sessions of the General Assembly separated by an election, followed by approval by the voters in a statewide referendum. To take effect in time for the 2021 redistricting of all 140 General Assembly districts and all 11 congressional districts, the amendment must pass its first reading in the current session of the General Assembly.

A full list of leadership council members can be found here.

augusta free press
augusta free press