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Thread: USA Today article: Proposal to make Chicago area the 51st state

  1. #1
    Cyburbian Plus
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    USA Today article: Proposal to make Chicago area the 51st state

    http://www.usatoday.com/news/nation/...ood/51773528/1
    Over 300 + news websites picked up this story


    two central Illinois lawmakers are pitching a unique, if outlandish, solution to eliminating the state's cultural divide:
    "Downstate families are tired of Chicago dictating its views to the rest of us,"
    Not likely because as the article stated it's about the economy.

    Is this a really a good idea ?
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    Cyburbian mgk920's avatar
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    Quote Originally posted by JNA View post
    http://www.usatoday.com/news/nation/...ood/51773528/1
    Over 300 + news websites picked up this story




    Not likely because as the article stated it's about the economy.

    Is this a really a good idea ?
    There have been similar grousings from upstate New York in regards to the NYC area over the years, too.

    Mike

  3. #3
    Cyburbian Linda_D's avatar
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    mgk is correct. I can't speak for Illinois, but I suspect that it's situation would be the same as Upstate NY if this pipe dream actually came to pass and NYC and Chicago became states: both of the "remainder" states would be economic basket cases fighting with Mississippi and New Mexico for the bottom of the economic/social pile. The people who advocate for separating NYC from Upstate accept the myth that Upstate NY supports NYC when reality says just the opposite. I'd guess it would be the same kind of people accepting the same type of myth over reality in Illinois.

    To a lesser extent, this sentiment exists in NW PA in regards to Philadelphia.

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    Chairman of the bored Maister's avatar
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    Economics is always the trump card, otherwise the state of Superior would have happened years ago.

  5. #5
    Cyburbian Brocktoon's avatar
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    It seems like several states go through this every year.Earlier this year a small group of people in Southern Arizona, around the Tucson area, stated they wanted to break off Pima County and form a new state called Baja Arizona. California goes through this every so often when people talk about splitting NorCal nad SoCal into two seperate states. There is dicsussion that DC should become a state since they have no voice in Congress but pay federal taxes and the neverending Puerto Rico discussion. My guess is if you did an archives search on USA Today you would find all of these stories...I think they write them on slow news days.
    "If you don't like change, you're going to like irrelevance even less" General Eric Shinseki

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    Cyburbian DetroitPlanner's avatar
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    Quote Originally posted by Maister View post
    Economics is always the trump card, otherwise the state of Superior would have happened years ago.
    We should have cut them loose a long time ago (KIDDING!). A few months back I was on Youtube and stumbled across some moron's version of New Michigan that cut away places like Benton Harbor, Muskegon and most of the Bay City to Detroit corridor, but keeping the Thumb and Midland. Yeah like that would work well. Besides being overtly racist, it was economically foolish. While I am not denying that many of Michigan's urban areas have serious problems, could you imagine New Michigan, with its biggest employers/corporations being Amway and Dow and all the poor people in the Northern Counties? Talk about a divisive nightmare!
    We hope for better things; it will arise from the ashes - Fr Gabriel Richard 1805

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    Cyburbian mgk920's avatar
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    Quote Originally posted by Maister View post
    Economics is always the trump card, otherwise the state of Superior would have happened years ago.
    You can say THAT again! Great scenery, increduble wilderness and outdoor sports opportunities, but aside from that, Da YuPee is a total depressing downer to drive through - it would be a complete economic basket case if it were an independent entity. In reality, it probably should have originally been made a part of Wisconsin back in the pre-statehood days.

    Mike

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    Cyburbian HomerJ's avatar
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    For one, I don't like this idea because electorally speaking this kind of approach could seriously sway things in favor of the R party. Also, as Linda_D pointed out, this would accomplish little more than revealing just how rural of a state Illinois actually is (and how small of a population it would have) without Chicago.
    Insanity in individuals is something rare - but in groups, parties, nations and epochs, it is the rule.

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    Cyburbian Cardinal's avatar
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    Having spent some time in southern Illinois, I don't doubt that there are racial overtones to the idea of splitting off the Chicago area. Chicago is not seen as a dynamic and diverse city driving the economy of a region, but as a place filled with poor black people who live off welfare paid for by people in small towns downstate. The reality, of course, is it is the downstate towns who receive more benefits from the Chicago area.

    Assume that there was a split. It is likely that not just the City of Chicago, but the Chicago MSA would form the new state. I suspect Rockford would be wanting to be a part of that new state as well. Eleven counties, then, would have a population of 8.9 million, making "Chicago" the 11th-largest state, with 13 members in Congress. The remaining 61 counties would have 3.9 million people, making Illinois the 27th-largest state, just ahead of Oregon. It would have five representatives. But while the Chicago area is gaining population, most of the remainder of Illinois is losing population.
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    Cyburbian hilldweller's avatar
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    Chicagoland becoming its own state? Talk about EPIC corruption

    Wasn't there something in the news about about a seccession effort in California recently?

  11. #11
    Cyburbian illinoisplanner's avatar
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    I think they should only make the highly democratic parts of Cook County (everything except the northwestern part and the Lemont/Orland Park/Tinley Park/Palos area) its own state. And they should make the northwestern part its own county, and lump the southwest part of Cook in with Will County, so that the Republicans and independents in those areas of the county can feel like they have a voice. Just like the downstate folks, us suburban folks are tired of the corruption of Chicago, in addition to feeling like our votes don't count. If you look at the 2010 election for governor, every county in the state of IL minus Cook, St. Clair (where East St. Louis is), and some impoverished rural county down by Cairo went Republican. 99 of 102 counties went Republican, yet the race still ended up going to Democrat Pat Quinn by a razor-thin margin. How fair is that? The will of the people of almost everywhere in the state is overruled by largely one area: Cook County.

    And as for people saying that it would confuse things to have the city and suburbs be in separate states, I point you to NY & NJ. They seem to make it work alright.

    Under this scenario, the real Illinois would have a population of about 8 million and the liberal parts of Cook County that would become its own state would have a population of about 4 million.

    By the way, I really don't want to separate the state like this. I like the city. I just wish a lot of the people who lived there had more common sense.
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    Cyburbian Brocktoon's avatar
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    Quote Originally posted by hilldweller View post
    Chicagoland becoming its own state? Talk about EPIC corruption
    I don't think the State of Chicago would be any more corrupt than Rhode Island.
    "If you don't like change, you're going to like irrelevance even less" General Eric Shinseki

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    Cyburbian hilldweller's avatar
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    Quote Originally posted by Brocktoon View post
    I don't think the State of Chicago would be any more corrupt than Rhode Island.
    Tis' True.

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    Cyburbian Otis's avatar
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    Quote Originally posted by illinoisplanner View post
    If you look at the 2010 election for governor, every county in the state of IL minus Cook, St. Clair (where East St. Louis is), and some impoverished rural county down by Cairo went Republican. 99 of 102 counties went Republican, yet the race still ended up going to Democrat Pat Quinn by a razor-thin margin. How fair is that? The will of the people of almost everywhere in the state is overruled by largely one area: Cook County.
    Perfectly fair. Counties don't vote, cornfields don't vote, people do. More people voted for Quinn than voted for anyone else. End of story. If you think it unfair, how would you correct it so people from downstate get their votes counted more than people from Cook County? Should people in Cook County only get 5/8 of a vote?

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    Cyburbian Tarf's avatar
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    Same thing here in California - Southern Californians (particularly those in Orange County) always want to separate from Northern California.

    Wouldn't ever happen, though. Southern California includes Los Angeles, which is anything but conservative. Also, San Diego is pretty RINO. Votes republican usually (though I think in 2008 we went democrat if I'm not mistaken).
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    Cyburbian illinoisplanner's avatar
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    Quote Originally posted by Otis View post
    Perfectly fair. Counties don't vote, cornfields don't vote, people do. More people voted for Quinn than voted for anyone else. End of story. If you think it unfair, how would you correct it so people from downstate get their votes counted more than people from Cook County? Should people in Cook County only get 5/8 of a vote?
    You don't live here, so you don't understand what it is like to have idiots in Cook County continue to represent you and drive this state into the ground, stealing our taxpayer dollars to subsidize Chicago's problems (but largely failing at actually solving them), instead of bettering the state as a whole. Or what it is like to have elected officals that are more interested in benefiting their union buddies and engaging in corruption and cronyism rather than serving the people of this state.

    I understand a vote is a vote. But the problem is regional bias. People in Peoria, Rockford, Springfield, the Quad Cities, the Metro East area of St. Louis, and the suburban counties surrounding Cook have interests, beliefs, needs, and views that stand in stark contrast from those in Chicago. And unfortunately, it is now entirely possible to continue to have elections like this where the vote of people in these areas will never matter. So why would the Chicago Democrats that will likely keep getting elected to the governor's office pay any attention to the needs of the people downstate when, at the end of the day, their votes don't matter?

    Sadly, the only real solution to ensure that the majority of Illinois is fairly represented is to separate Cook County from the rest of the state, so that way Chicago can have their governor and the rest of the state can have their own governor. Either that, or a major sea change will need to happen.

    This will never happen though, so people downstate will likely always be under-served and under-represented. And apparently, to people like you, that's fair. Well tell that to the people in a small rural city that's having their prison shut down, the people in Moline and Peoria who have to bail out Cook County-based Sears (but whose respective companies John Deere and Caterpillar aren't receiving the same preferential treatment), or the 1 million people in the Fox Valley that continue to have very poor public transportation and congested highways, while highways in Cook County constantly are being reconstruted at enormous costs so that the liberal labor unions can cash in.
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  17. #17
    Cyburbian Brocktoon's avatar
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    Quote Originally posted by illinoisplanner View post
    You don't live here, so you don't understand what it is like to have idiots in Cook County continue to represent you and drive this state into the ground, stealing our taxpayer dollars to subsidize Chicago's problems (but largely failing at actually solving them), instead of bettering the state as a whole. Or what it is like to have elected officals that are more interested in benefiting their union buddies and engaging in corruption and cronyism rather than serving the people of this state..
    Actually, Chicago's economic activity subsidizes the rest of the state not the other way around. Illinois would be far worse off without Chicago contrary to popular belief.

    Arizona is the opposite. Tucson and Phoenix account for 80% of the economic activity and have approximately 70% of the people but control only 40% of the seats at the legislature.
    "If you don't like change, you're going to like irrelevance even less" General Eric Shinseki

  18. #18
    Cyburbian illinoisplanner's avatar
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    Quote Originally posted by Brocktoon View post
    Actually, Chicago's economic activity subsidizes the rest of the state not the other way around. Illinois would be far worse off without Chicago contrary to popular belief.

    Arizona is the opposite. Tucson and Phoenix account for 80% of the economic activity and have approximately 70% of the people but control only 40% of the seats at the legislature.
    I'd beg to differ. Illinois, outside of central Cook County, is home to the HQ of such economic powerhouses as Caterpillar, John Deere, Archer Daniels Midland, State Farm, Walgreens, Baxter, Abbott Labratories, McDonald's, Navistar, Office Max, and Motorola & Sears (if NW Cook was to break off into its own county, which has been proposed many times), in addition to the largest intermodal center in the Midwest (located south of Joliet), 70 mil. sq. ft. of industrial warehouses along I-55, retail powerhouses in DuPage County, the Fox Valley, and Lake County, top-notch universities (U of Illinois, Illinois State, Northern Illinois, and Southern Illinois), federal research facilities (Fermilab, Argonne), and tourism centers in Gurnee, Galena, Springfield, and elsewhere. Not to mention all of the agriculture, with Illinois being one of the largest corn and soybean producers in the world. The way I see it, Illinois would be a normal Midwest state like Iowa or Indiana that is mostly rural with several small cities and a decent economy, in addition to the wealthy suburbs of Chicago, and not to mention a welcome break from the corruption, giant budget deficits, high taxes and misplaced priorities of Chicago-centric politics that have crippled our state for years.
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  19. #19
    Cyburbian Brocktoon's avatar
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    Quote Originally posted by illinoisplanner View post
    I'd beg to differ. Illinois, outside of central Cook County, is home to the HQ of such economic powerhouses as Caterpillar, John Deere, Archer Daniels Midland, State Farm, Walgreens, Baxter, Abbott Labratories, McDonald's, Navistar, Office Max, and Motorola & Sears (if NW Cook was to break off into its own county, which has been proposed many times), in addition to the largest intermodal center in the Midwest (located south of Joliet), 70 mil. sq. ft. of industrial warehouses along I-55, retail powerhouses in DuPage County, the Fox Valley, and Lake County, top-notch universities (U of Illinois, Illinois State, Northern Illinois, and Southern Illinois), federal research facilities (Fermilab, Argonne), and tourism centers in Gurnee, Galena, Springfield, and elsewhere. Not to mention all of the agriculture, with Illinois being one of the largest corn and soybean producers in the world. The way I see it, Illinois would be a normal Midwest state like Iowa or Indiana that is mostly rural with several small cities and a decent economy, in addition to the wealthy suburbs of Chicago, and not to mention a welcome break from the corruption, giant budget deficits, high taxes and misplaced priorities of Chicago-centric politics that have crippled our state for years.
    I guess what Chicago means is also part of the discussion; whether its Cook County, Chicago proper or the metro region. If you truly wanted to remove Chicago's influence from Illinois then you would need to remove the entire metro area which accounts for 80% of assessed property value for the entire state. The topic of this thread is Cook County proper.

    You are correct that Illinois does have some great attributes downstate but Illinois goes from being an economic powerhouse with Chicago to a third tier state (like Iowa) without it. Illinois could be much worse off...look across the lake and see what a poorly run city like Detroit does to the entire state. For all of Chicago's problems it is still a world class city and all world class cities have issues that impact the entire state. Would IL survive without Chicago...of course...but to state that Chicago is a drain on resources from downstate (and by downstate I means the area outside the Chicago metro area) is false. (I doubt anyone is Rock Island sees Lake County as anytime other than Chicago.) Please educate me and prove your claims with documents and facts rather than anecdotal evidence that Chicago is a net importer of state tax revenue

    FYI, Governor Ryan was from downstate and I am pretty sure he was corrupt...at least a jury of his peers thought so.
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  20. #20
    Cyburbian illinoisplanner's avatar
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    Quote Originally posted by Brocktoon View post
    I guess what Chicago means is also part of the discussion; whether its Cook County, Chicago proper or the metro region. If you truly wanted to remove Chicago's influence from Illinois then you would need to remove the entire metro area which accounts for 80% of assessed property value for the entire state. The topic of this thread is Cook County proper.

    You are correct that Illinois does have some great attributes downstate but Illinois goes from being an economic powerhouse with Chicago to a third tier state (like Iowa) without it. Illinois could be much worse off...look across the lake and see what a poorly run city like Detroit does to the entire state. For all of Chicago's problems it is still a world class city and all world class cities have issues that impact the entire state. Would IL survive without Chicago...of course...but to state that Chicago is a drain on resources from downstate (and by downstate I means the area outside the Chicago metro area) is false. (I doubt anyone is Rock Island sees Lake County as anytime other than Chicago.) Please educate me and prove your claims with documents and facts rather than anecdotal evidence that Chicago is a net importer of state tax revenue

    FYI, Governor Ryan was from downstate and I am pretty sure he was corrupt...at least a jury of his peers thought so.
    Well, most people in the suburbs of Chicago have grown just as weary of Chicago proper's influence in matters as downstate people have. It's no wonder that there have been multiple secession movements for the northwest part of Cook and the southern parts of Cook to secede from the county and form their own counties. I'm sure the people in these areas would likewise not want to be in the state of Chicago or the state of Cook if such a state was created.

    And I would hardly consider Iowa or Indiana third-tier states. Are they smaller states, sure. But they also don't have outrageous deficits, have political environments that are more favorable for job creation, don't have the level of political corruption that harms the people of the state like Illinois does, and I'm not sure about Indiana, but I know the people in Iowa have better health and I believe are better educated. Their umemployment rate is much lower than Illinois' is at the moment. I would rather have these things in a Chicago-less Illinois, even if it means I can't boast about all the things Chicago has to offer. After all, there are still plenty of things to be proud of elsewhere in the state, as I have already mentioned. And regarding Michigan, we may not be as bad off as they are, but we're probably the 2nd worst state in the Midwest right now.

    Regarding a drain on resources, I'm not trying to suggest that Chicago doesn't bring in good sales tax revenue. It does. Especially considering how high the sales tax rates are there. However, the rest of the state would survive just fine, with all of the suburban shopping malls and retail centers in the downstate cities. In addition, sales taxes are local anyways, so it's not as much of a statewide issue. The sales taxes go to the municipalities and counties that receive them, not into a big pot for the whole state. What is more of a statewide issue though are income taxes and property taxes. Chicago would not fare well without its wealthy suburbs in the collar counties, who would likely be apt to join the state of Illinois rather than the state of Chicago. In addition, you have to consider how much statewide money pours into Chicago to repair its infrastructure, and all the money the collar counties send in to subsidize Chicago's transit system (while they get comparably abysmal transit service in return), as well as all the medicaid and welfare aid to the impoverished people in the city, and all the money to pay for the overburdened prison system because Chicago has failed to adequately deal with the crime in their city.

    And yes, governor Ryan was from Kankakee, but he allowed himself to get caught up in the corrupt ways of the establishment. It's not to say that Illinois wouldn't be immune from corruption if Chicago became its own state, but it would at least be able to relieve itself of a good chunk of it.
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    Cyburbian Plus Whose Yur Planner's avatar
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    They could take the Northern/NorthWest Indiana counties with them.They have more in common with Chicago than the rest of the state. I second the idea of not just taking Chicago per se, but the adjoining areas/counties/cities with them. Aside from ip said about a few conservative suburbs, Chicago is pretty much the spoon that stirs the cup in that area.
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    Cyburbian stroskey's avatar
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    I've often advocated for a state of all democrats and a state of all republicans. Let each play out on its own and see what happens. People don't realize that we need a mix of both to get anywhere.
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  23. #23
    Cyburbian illinoisplanner's avatar
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    Quote Originally posted by Whose Yur Planner View post
    They could take the Northern/NorthWest Indiana counties with them.They have more in common with Chicago than the rest of the state. I second the idea of not just taking Chicago per se, but the adjoining areas/counties/cities with them. Aside from ip said about a few conservative suburbs, Chicago is pretty much the spoon that stirs the cup in that area.
    I don't think the adjoining counties would want to be part of the state of Cook County though. Maybe Lake County, IN (an historically Democratic county), and possibly Lake County, IL (a traditionally moderate county) would want to join Cook, but otherwise, I think the citizens and elected county officials (which are predominantly and historically Republican) in McHenry, Kane, DuPage, Kendall, and Will would all be in favor of joining Illinois rather than Cook.

    If made separate states, I think Illinois and Cook County will still be codependent on each other economically (not unlike NY & NJ), but at least the rest of Illinois would be able to set statewide policies that are more in-line with the views of the citizenry and would be able to strengthen the economies of the collar counties and downstate areas more directly.

    Quote Originally posted by stroskey View post
    I've often advocated for a state of all democrats and a state of all republicans. Let each play out on its own and see what happens. People don't realize that we need a mix of both to get anywhere.
    I completely understand where you're coming from. It is good to have balance and equal representation of both sides and for parties to work together to get stuff done for the people. However, in Illinois, no representation ever seems to be given the Republicans these days. The views of the millions of Republicans and moderates in the state are consistently denied and trumped in favor of the views of the millions-more Democrats, that are most heavily concentrated in one county. And the Democrats know all they need to do is to continue to falsely accuse Republicans as racist, and they'll continue to cruise to victory. It'd be nice if the Democrats in this state would open their minds and the hearts every now and then to the other side, but they don't seem to care. Take a look at my blog about how the Democrats slapped Republicans in the face with the most gerrymandered and politically-motivated (rather than geographically-motivated) new legislative maps ever. It's basically them saying, 'we hate Republicans, we don't want any more of you, and we'd rather have less of you, and we will do whatever we can to make sure that you guys have as few seats at the table as possible.'
    Last edited by illinoisplanner; 24 Jan 2012 at 2:57 PM.
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    OH....IO Hink's avatar
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    Quote Originally posted by illinoisplanner View post
    Take a look at my blog about how the Democrats slapped Republicans in the face with the most gerrymandered and politically-motivated (rather than geographically-motivated) new legislative maps ever. It's basically them saying, 'we hate Republicans, we don't want any more of you, and we'd rather have less of you, and we will do whatever we can to make sure that you guys have as few seats at the table as possible.'
    Every state does that. Illinois isn't special.

    http://www.cleveland.com/open/index....xt_move_a.html

    R's get power, D's get power. If the people are D's right now... that is the will of the people....

    The mix of R's and D's and hopefully in the future some other letter only helps to balance out both agendas.
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    Cyburbian illinoisplanner's avatar
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    Quote Originally posted by Hink View post
    Every state does that. Illinois isn't special.

    http://www.cleveland.com/open/index....xt_move_a.html

    R's get power, D's get power. If the people are D's right now... that is the will of the people....

    The mix of R's and D's and hopefully in the future some other letter only helps to balance out both agendas.
    Yeah, but you live in a swing state where there is a back-and-forth and give-and-take. You also live in a state where no one area has dominant control. You should consider yourself lucky.

    However, there is no back-and-forth or give-and-take in my state anymore. We used to have a pretty balanced map actually that was crafted in a more bipartisan nature after the 2000 census. Several suburban Congressional districts went back and forth between the Ds and Rs, in addition to some downstate districts as well. I think one year, the Ds had 11 seats and the Rs had 8, and it switched to 11 for the Rs and 8 for the Ds again. The way the new map is drawn, it will be about 13 districts for the Ds and 5 for the Rs for the next 10 years. And the districts don't make any sense and are so confusing for the people, where neighborhoods are split down the middle and districts are split into multiple almost-isolated nodes. The political environment is so toxic now...nothing's bipartisan and that's wrong. And all because one county in the state is so heavily populated and heavily partisan, it outweighs the will of the rest of the state.
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