Thursday, December 22, 2011

Will Latinos gain in small City Council?

I’m not convinced that Latino political empowerment will really be advanced by cutting the size of the City Council.
SOLIS: Is fewer better?

That is the line of logic being offered up by 25th Ward Alderman Danny Solis these days, who says that if all the existing boundaries have to be scrapped and we start over then it becomes easier to give Latinos a “fair” share.

WITH “FAIR” BEING dictated by the concept of Chicago’s “official” population of 2.7 million people being 33 percent black, 32 percent white and 29 percent Latino (with the remaining 6 percent being mostly Asian). He says it could result in eight white wards, eight black wards, seven Latino wards and two other wards that could flop around from ethnicity to ethnicity.

I wonder if it just increases the potential for gerrymandering because multiple neighborhoods would have to be combined to create 25 wards (there are roughly 120 neighborhoods and sub-neighborhoods within Chicago).

But the move also is being portrayed by some people as Latinos “calling the bluff” of Mayor Rahm Emanuel, who has said that he will push for a reduction in the size of the City Council if aldermen can’t get their act together and agree on new boundaries for the existing 50 wards.

Those wanting to know more need to check out this weblog’s sister site, The South Chicagoan, for more details.


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