At the end of the month, citizens will have their say in the state’s creation of a new U.S. Congressional district, along with local House and Senate districts. The first hearing is tentatively set for Monday, March 28 in Myrtle Beach.
Yesterday, Senate President Pro Tempore Glenn McConnell (R-Charleston) named the following members of the Senate Redistricting Subcommittee, who will oversee the public hearingsand submit the final plan to the Senate. They are: Sen. Robert Ford (D-Charleston), Sen. Larry Martin(R-Pickens), Sen. Brad Hutto (D-Orangeburg), Sen. Gerald Malloy(D-Darlington), Sen. Raymond Cleary(R-Georgetown), and Sen. Phil Shoopman (R-Greenville).
The subcommittee will hold an organizational meeting at 10:00 am, on March 2. Sen. McConnell will serve as chair of the special panel.
McConnell says it the process must pass muster with the Justice Department, since the state is covered under the Voting Rights Act. He says the Senate must keep political “controversy and partisan backbiting” out of the process.
“You are all my friends here. At times we may disagree, but at the end of the day we must still be friends. Therefore, we must conduct this process with grace and respect,” McConnell told the Senate.