To the Editor:
Do you know whether your town is getting its own dedicated representative in the New Hampshire State House? Fifty-six towns may lose out.
The N.H. Constitution, Article 11 states: “When the population of any town or ward, according to the last federal census, is within a reasonable deviation from the ideal population for one or more representative seats, the town or ward shall have its own district of one or more representative seats.” The “ideal population” in the 2020 Census is 3,444 people, and if your town has that population, you should have your own House district with one or more reps. Why does this matter? Imagine your town needs a new water or sewer system and needs state help to finance it. Having a state representative who lives in town, knows the people, and knows the issues, is invaluable. In some towns, like Canaan and Gilmanton, they’re eligible for their own districts, but are in a district with other towns and have no reps from their towns.
Currently 56 N.H. towns with a population of 3,444 or more may be deprived of unique representation in the proposed redistricting maps. That means 56 violations of the N.H. Constitution. Other proposed maps substantially reduced that number.
Please ask your representative to attend deliberations January 5th, 6th, and 7th to vote no on this “majority map.” Please also ask them to vote no on the majority map that gives us Congressional districts that are non-competitive and gerrymandered.
Because they know they are demographically doomed, the current crop of Republicans are committed to an all-out, no-holds-barred fight to grab and hold power by whatever means are available to them. Their policy appears to be, “ignore the law, ignore the Constitution—if you can get away with it, it’s OK.”
We’d like our Rep to go further than you suggest. A “Hell No!” vote would just barely suffice.