We have conceived of a novel idea, which we have always attributed to Eric Eskola of WCCO Radio and TPT Almanac fame, who posed the question of a 1/3, 1/3, 1/3 budget solution of 1999 at a gubernatorial press conference. When Reform Party Governor Jesse Ventura, Senate Majority Leader Roger Moe (DFL, 02, Erskine) and House Speaker Steve Sviggum (R-27B, Kenyon) all agreed to divide the state budget into three pieces. We once asked Moe, the consummate negotiator, why he had agreed to such a thing, and he said, “Because it was all I could get.”
To this end we believe, the congressional and state legislative maps should be similarly aligned. Congressionally, there should be three rural districts decided on by Senate Republicans, two urban districts and one suburban district decided on by the House DFL and two suburban/exurban districts decided on by the 5-judge panel.
Similarly, there should be 22-rural senate districts decided on by Senate Republicans, 22-urban/suburban senate districts decided on by the House DFL and the 23-remaining decided on by the 5-judge panel.
We believe this is a plan, if logical heads were to prevail, would be one that will far better reflect the political representation of our state. One caveat being, in the case of the regional centers of Duluth, St Cloud, Mankato, Moorhead and Rochester the bias should be reflective of the party of the current state senator.