NJ Democrats hammer out redistricting plan
By Kyle Maichle
TRENTON, New Jersey: Democratic leaders in the New Jersey Legislature are meeting to discuss redistricting hours before Governor Chris Christie gives his State of the State address on January 11, 2011. The meeting, which will be held at the Trenton Marriott, will discuss the whole redistricting process in detail to Democrats.
A source close to the New Jersey Democratic Party told PolitickerNJ that other than discussing the redistricting process, there would be further discussion on how to counter the Republicans redistricting strategy. The unnamed source said: "it's funny, for the past year State Senator Kevin O'Toole has basically been telling anyone he can find how prepared the Republicans are on the map...The Rs honestly have no idea what's coming."
Democrats have said that they would like to keep the state's largest cities of Newark and Jersey City together instead of splitting the cities up into different legislative districts. Recently, a state court ruled against complete "unpacking" of legislative districts. Republicans applauded the ruling as a win for them as they cited most New Jersey voters who are Democrats live in more concentrated districts.
Despite the Democratic source claims to PolitickerNJ that they have the edge on redistricting, Republican sources have said that they are together and ready to go on their end. They do not view the recent firing of State Republican Chairman Jay Webber as something that will impact their redistricting efforts. Republicans have said that they are ready to begin their public hearings on the week of January 11, 2011.