In the recent online piece by Forum Communications Co. columnist Rob Port, he said there is nothing wrong with the process in North Dakota. I beg to differ.
The big problem with the Legislature’s redistricting proposal is language that exempts draft maps from open records. This means that politicians pick their voters in secret. It’s a sneaky way to protect their seats.
Redistricting isn’t a partisan issue as Port makes it out to be. Even the North Dakota Newspaper Association and North Dakota Broadcasters Association are against the secrecy part of the proposal. As a conservative, I am sure Rob supports transparency as in open meetings and open records.
Rob also seems to hold that there was no problem with ethics issues in North Dakota government either. Again, I beg to differ. I, along with the many who voted for an ethics commission, don’t think elected officials should be getting lobbyist-funded, lavish suppers for free. High-falutin’ meals and fancy junkets should not be considered natural perks of office.
And, neither should letting legislators pick their voters in secret to protect their seats.
Dina Butcher, Bismarck