Help us send a clear message to Harrisburg: Pennsylvanians support fair districting policies, and we’re willing to fight for them.
Contacting your state legislators is one of the most effective ways to help our cause. We recommend phone calls, in-person visits, or printed letters—email doesn’t have as great an impact. Other things to keep in mind:
To find your legislators, go to the PA General Assembly locator tool, then use the drop-down list in our Advocacy Record Keeping tool. The tool shows contact info, if they supported past reform efforts OR have signed on to new ones.
To help you plan your call or visit, we can tell you more about your legislator’s positions and offer advice on how to approach them. We’re always gathering updates from citizens like you who’ve already spoken with their representatives.
In-person visits make the biggest impression. These talking points will help you have a productive, accurate conversation.
Summary of the redistricting bills FDPA supports this session (2020-21): The soon-to-be-introduced House Bill 22 and Senate Bill 222, the Legislative and Congressional Redistricting Act (LACRA) builds on and improves existing redistricting measures, ensuring a more transparent process, with meaningful public engagement and clear, measurable map-drawing criteria to create districts that truly reflect the will of the voters.
This belief is strong across voters of all parties and all parts of the state. (Want more detail? Check our survey update.)
When all redistricting activity takes place publicly, with meaningful opportunities for public engagement, voters can see and participate in the process. No more closed-door meetings where a handful of party operatives carve out districts in secret to punish recalcitrant legislators, protect incumbency and tip the outcome of elections in their favor. Transparency enhances voters’ trust in their government officials.
Clear, measurable controls on map-making make it harder to abuse the process:
Explicit redistricting criteria establish standards to which legislators can be held accountable.
We’re a big swing state with a large legislature and lax campaign finance laws. Both Republican and Democratic PACs are working hard to flip PA districts. So much outside money creates an even more negative tone and discourages good people from both sides from seeking public office.
The five-member commission in charge of legislative redistricting is controlled by party leaders who can and do punish rank-and-file members who vote against the party line.
Redistricting reform has become a rallying cry among a range of groups, and voters are taking notice. Leaders who show their commitment to fairness and are willing to fix our system will win many fans—while those who don’t will lose the confidence of their voters. The 2019 Franklin & Marshall survey suggests 3 out of 5 PA voters are more likely to vote for a legislator who supports an independent commission.
When the four commissioners can’t decide on a fifth member, the Supreme Court picks for them. That court is currently dominated by Democrats—which means the next state district maps will potentially favor Democrats unless Republicans help change the process. .
Legislators struggle to keep track of which people are their constituents—and residents aren’t sure, either. Plus, when districts are stretched out and oddly shaped, it takes excessive driving time to get between district offices.
Did your legislator express concerns about supporting our cause, push back against the facts you shared, or show support? Tell us what you learned—we’ll use your report to help others who want to contact their legislator.