Two weeks to draw new Congressional an impractical task

Fairness has been the watchword in discussions of Pennsylvania’s Congressional map, for which the state Supreme Court has ordered revisions.

While this issue has been painted as a struggle between the two major parties, candidates and voters also are supposed to be served by the map redrawing.

Redrawing Congressional maps in two weeks does not seem to promote fairness to all parties involved.

But Supreme Court Justice Samuel Alito, who handles the emergency appeals from Pennsylvania, has rejected the request of GOP legislative leaders to put the redrawing on hold for now.

Right now, there are 60 people who say they plan to run for Congress in the May Primary Election.

They just don’t know the district in which they will be seeking office.

At best they will know by late February and they have until March 20 to file candidate paperwork, thanks to a two-week extension granted by the Department of State.

Running for political office is serious stuff. Voting in these elections is serious stuff. Determining the size and geographic shape of the district is a serious exercise.

A two-week rush job to map out the Congressional districts that meet everyone’s idea of fairness seems to fly in the face of what these elections are supposed to mean.

Some of the Congressional boundaries need to be redrawn.

There’s no doubt about that. But remember, these maps were okay with the courts and many Democrats in 2011.

Many pundits are assuming the redrawing of maps favors Democrats, but many of the Democratic candidates will be challengers with a name recognition deficit. History has shown that name recognition matters a lot in Congressional races.

A more pragmatic approach that would have been more fair to candidates, voters and both parties would have been applying new maps to the 2020 elections.