CHANGE Illinois' leader urges fair map boundaries, laments ‘status quo’
CHANGE Illinois’ Executive Director Ra Joy, with a track record of building consensus, recently stated that political players have failed to initiate districting reforms, citing multiple attempts by progressive organizations to balance the state’s boundaries.
“This is the third bite at the apple for political reformers and reform-minded organizations,” Joy said. “The League of Women Voters led an effort in 2010. There was a campaign in 2014, Yes for Independent Maps. The Independent Map Amendment has us closer than ever before to bringing fair, open and impartial redistricting to Illinois.”
Joy said the measure garnered more than 580,000 signatures to earn its place on the ballot.
"I think the status quo has failed us,” he said. “Unfortunately there are some protectors of the status quo.”
Pressed to identify House Speaker Michael Madigan as “the power behind” a pending lawsuit designed to obliterate the Independent Map amendment from November’s ballot, Joy took the high road.
“[We] try not to hate the players,” said Joy, who has served CHANGE Illinois as executive director since late 2015. “Our goal is to fundamentally change the game and to change the rules that govern political participation. So, I’m not naming names but I think there are those who wield disproportionate power that simply want to protect their power — and our goal is to give more power to voters.”