Virginia Speaker Against Redrawing Senate District Lines | WAMU 88.5 - American University Radio

WAMU 88.5 : News

Filed Under:

Virginia Speaker Against Redrawing Senate District Lines

Play associated audio

Virginia House Speaker Bill Howell has shot down a controversial plan to redraw state Senate districts that was narrowly passed by the Senate two weeks ago.

The redistricting plan had been lying dormant since last year, and was brought to the Senate on the day of the inauguration, which Democratic Sen. Henry Marsh was attending. This gave Republicans a one-vote margin. The new plan was attached to a House bill and created a new minority-majority district and an advantage for some Republicans. Democrats were appalled and hoped that Speaker Howell would toss the plan out. He did.

Sen. Dick Saslaw and other Democrats had argued it's unconstitutional. "The small technical changes that the House has made would pass constitutional muster," says Saslaw. "Where you run into problems is if you did a wholesale redistricting, which is what occurred here."

Senate Republicans said they remain committed to creating a sixth majority-minority district as required by the Voting Rights Act, and said they're confident that those new districts will be the ones under which the 2015 elections will be conducted.

NPR

Jon Stewart's Replacement Is Unlikely Choice For 'The Daily Show'

"The Daily Show" replaces departing host Jon Stewart with South African comedian Trevor Noah. He is a relatively unknown comedian and an unlikely choice for the program.
NPR

Our Food-Safety System Is A Patchwork With Big Holes, Critics Say

More than a dozen federal agencies play a part in keeping food from making Americans sick. Critics say the system has gaps, and we'd all be safer if federal food safety efforts were under one roof.
WAMU 88.5

Q&A: Maryland State Sen. John Astle On 'Welcome Home Vietnam Veterans Day'

Maryland Gov. Larry Hogan signed a bill into law Monday evening declaring every March 30 "Welcome Home Vietnam Veterans Day." WAMU spoke with Astle at his office in Annapolis.
NPR

Bringing Internet To The Far Corners Of The Earth

About 5 billion people are mostly or entirely disconnected from the Internet. So to capitalize on this opportunity, Google and Facebook have begun high-profile campaigns to connect the unconnected.

Leave a Comment

Help keep the conversation civil. Please refer to our Terms of Use and Code of Conduct before posting your comments.