Senate Democrats have launched a redistricting website to encourage
constituent participation in the redrawing of legislative and congressional
Visit the site at
“The site focuses on public access and visitor interactivity,” according to
a statement released today. “Senate Democrats hope that by encouraging
public access to redistricting information and seeking public input, they
may preserve Hoosiers’ best interests and lend accountability to the
Constituents can learn about the redistricting process at the site and share
their thoughts and opinions on how new maps could affect their
representation. The new site also provides access to interactive census
maps, Indiana’s 2010 Census data, and the state’s current district maps.
In addition, the state has established three locations where the public can
access map-making software and census data to draw their own district maps
and share their proposals with legislators: on the campuses of Indiana
University-Bloomington, Indiana University-South Bend, and Indiana
University-Purdue University Indianapolis.
State Sen. Tim Lanane, D-Anderson, the Democrat lead in the redistricting
effort, says public input is vital in informing legislators how districts
can best serve Hoosiers’ needs. “Every resident of Indiana is affected by
state and federal laws, and they deserve to have representatives in
Indianapolis and Washington who truly represent their interests and their
community,” Lanane said. “Local perspective is what will make this the most
effective process in protecting voter interests.”
Each of the four caucuses in the General Assembly will review the data and
propose new district maps to account for population shifts within the state.
After the proposed maps are made public, it will be imperative for Hoosiers
to review the proposals and provide input on how the new maps could affect
voters’ rights and access. Maps drawn by this General Assembly will play a
part in constituent representation for the next decade.
As this process moves forward, Senate Democrats hope to encourage public
input to promote the following:
•Preservation of neighborhoods.
•Preservation of communities of interest.
•Protection of minority voters.
•Compactness to ensure connection between elected officials and their
•Simply shaped districts.
Senate Democrat Leader Vi Simpson, D-Ellettsville, says the caucus will also
continue to push for an independent commission to redraw district maps. This
year, the measure contained within Senate Bill 468 did not receive a hearing
in the Republican-controlled Senate Elections Committee.
“It is disappointing that Indiana has not joined so many other states to
allow an independent group to develop proposals,” Simpson said. “It would be
a great benefit for voters if the maps were drawn with their best interests
in mind, instead of protection of incumbent officials. Competitive races
where voters have a real choice of candidates are best for the democratic
Currently 21 U.S. states have a redistricting commission that draws a plan
for new district maps, advises the legislature on how to draw a plan, or
acts as a backup if the legislature fails to draw a plan for new maps.
For more information on the Senate Democrat Caucus visit