(KCPW News) While the Utah legislature’s redistricting committee has been getting input from residents across the state, one Utahn who’s not hesitant to weigh in on the process is Democratic Congressman Jim Matheson. It’s widely believed the last Congressional redistricting a decade ago was a partisan gerrymander to make sure he couldn’t win re-election, and Matheson says he’s seen nothing that makes him believe this time will be any different.
“There’s been no indication that would make anyone believe otherwise, in my opinion,” he told KCPW. “Our legislature has a track record, it’s established in the past, of behaving that way, and I’m not clear that I see any indication they’re going to change.”
Matheson’s current district stretches from eastern Salt Lake County down to southern Utah.
Some state lawmakers have said they believe the new congressional districts should continue to have such an urban-rural mix, but Matheson sees this as no more than an excuse.
“They can dress it up however they want, and they can describe it under whatever other terms they want, but the reality is we all know what the motivation is here, and it’s to do a partisan gerrymander,” he says.
The Congressman says the redistricting process will be a factor in whether he runs for re-election, or enters the Senate or Governor’s race instead, but he says it won’t be the only factor. We’ll have a conversation with Matheson this Friday morning at 11 on KCPW’s Politics Up Close.