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Amendment Y passes: Congressional redistricting in Colorado will now be handled by commission

Congressional redistricting has changed in Colorado. It will not be handled by an independent 12-member commission after Amendment Y passes.

Voters have passed Amendment Y, which will establish an independent commission to draw Colorado’s congressional districts.

Amendment Y will create the Independent Congressional Redistricting Commission, with the goal of removing political influence from the Congressional redistricting process.

The new ICRC will be comprised of 12 commissioners – four members each from Democrats, Republicans and unaffiliated voters – who will be selected by a panel of retired judges.

The Colorado Supreme Court will now approve the congressional maps that the commission is charged with drawing.

Prior to Amendment Y, the power to redraw the state's congressional districts rested in the hands of the General Assembly. In the past, the Governor has called a special session of the legislature after final population figures have become available.

Now, a 12-person committee made up of an equal number of Democrats, Republicans and unaffiliated voters will decide where the lines are.

Districting, specifically gerrymandering districts, has been a national concern for years, but Colorado hasn't seen any high-profile complaints against the practice. That’s different than states like Florida or North Carolina, where judges threw out districts due to their unjust borders.

Opponents said they worry the amendment will take accountability out of redistricting. They said state legislators had to answer to constituents, but this independent commission will answer to no one.

Supporters said they like the transparency offered by the new rules and like that no one party will ever control the lines.

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