First, a little bit of CO backstory: The Western Slope (where I live) is a more rural area of Colorado, and a Republican stronghold, with people who are generally conservative. Boulder is on the more RED REVOLUTION! WORKERS UNITE! FREE ECO-GROWN PATCHOULI AND ARUGULA FOR ALL! side of the spectrum, about as far away culturally as you can get from the west side of the state.
Now, here in Colorado we have a saying: "The whiskey's for drinking and the water's for fighting." The Western Slope has much fewer people than the Front Range (where Boulder is), but we have much more water (Colorado River, anyone?). And the easterners are always trying to steal the west's water.
Enter the redistricting! The Republican proposals all keep things relatively the same. The Democrats proposals--every single last one of them--cuts up the west slope and puts my county in the same district as Boulder. Can you say, "blatant power grab," anyone? Then the D's have the gall to say to the R's "There is a blatant cracking of Hispanic voters in the Republican maps. This is just a slap in the face to so many Hispanics." (Dan Pabon, Dumb-Denver) Oh, like you're so morally superior by slapping my face with YOUR excellent idea? And who said that all Hispanics vote the same way?
Rather than descend into a rambling string of incoherent obscenities now, like I'm doing in my head, instead I'll put down a few quotes from some newspapers from around the state.
From the Pueblo Chieftain:
We can’t see any practical, rational value in throwing all congressional districts into a gerrymandered map that would give the Denver metro area an undue influence on all of Colorado’s congressional districts. Sen. Heath’s maps constitute a politically cynical ploy that’s beneath any serious statesman.
From the Durango Herald:
Although redistricting is all about politics, it must not be blatantly, and abusively, partisan.
The issue is not as clear cut as the GOP wants to make it seem, but the Dems have it wrong.
That creative packaging of blue-collar Democrats and far-right Republicans would be the equivalent of a forced marriage between the Hatfields and McCoys, even if you ignore their battles over water and other matters.
“I am very angry that you call it ‘city integrity’ but there isn’t any rural integrity. The maps drawn by Democrats could result in seven congressmen living within a mile of Denver International Airport. The Western slope, Eastern plains, any chances of us electing a representative from those areas under any of your plans would be minimal. I’m deeply disappointed.”
Bah. Feh. A pox on all their houses.