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Redistricting changes unlikely in Indiana this year

Posted at 6:41 AM, Feb 20, 2017
and last updated 2017-02-20 06:42:15-05

INDIANAPOLIS (AP) - An effort to change who is responsible for drawing Indiana's election maps is unlikely to gain approval this year after a legislative panel declined to take a vote on the issue.

A plan from Republican state Rep. Jerry Torr, co-authored by House Speaker Brian Bosma, would establish an independent commission to draw maps, rather than lawmakers. The recommendation would still be subject to approval by the Legislature.

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The measure faces a looming deadline for a committee vote, but Rep. Milo Smith refused to allow a vote Wednesday. He says lawmakers didn't have enough time to prepare amendments.

Some Republicans question the constitutionality of the proposal or don't see a need for redistricting reform. Supporters say an independent panel drawing election maps could lead to fairer districts and more competitive races.

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