Fact-checkers have quickly outlined the inaccuracies in Sen. Lindsey Graham's (R-S.C.) claims about Democratic lawmakers' redistricting initiative. On Friday, June 18, Graham appeared at the Faith & Freedom Coalition's Road to Majority Conference in Florida where he expressed concern about the redistricting provision in the For the People Act.
According to Graham, the provision would "change America forever."
"There's a provision in (the bill) that would take away from states the ability to draw congressional lines, and give it to an independent commission created in Washington," Graham said. "That means that when people move to South Carolina, Florida, and Texas, and we get new congressmen and women because people are moving and the population shifts, that Republican state houses can't draw those lines, but some Democratic-appointed commission. That would be the end of redistricting as we know it."
Now, according to CNN, fact-checkers are assessing Graham's words and carving out the inaccuracies in his statement. The publication notes that while tur South Carolina lawmaker was correct in saying that the Democratic effort would transform redistricting, he was incorrect in two different ways when he offered his perspective on what the bill's provision would do.
"Facts First: The Democratic bill would require states to create their own independent commissions to draw district boundaries, but those commissions would not be created in Washington, located in Washington or run from Washington. It's also false to claim that the commissions would be "Democratic-appointed." Rather, each state government -- aside from a small number of states the bill would allow to keep their current redistricting systems -- would be required to select or create a nonpartisan state agency to come up with a short list of applicants for their new 15-member commission. Then the 15 members of the commission -- five Republican members, five Democratic members, and five members unaffiliated with either party -- would be chosen through a combination of random selection and cross-partisan consensus."
Speaking to the publication, redistricting experts also offered their perspectives. Northwestern University law professor Michael Kang and Stanford University law professor Nate Persily both agreed that Graham's claims were inaccurate.
In an email to the publication, they also explained why the Republican lawmaker was incorrect in his assessment.
They noted that the bill "would require congressional redistricting by independent commission, but independent commissions to be established under state law by the states themselves, not 'created in Washington.' The commissions would not be 'Democratic-appointed,' but instead members would be selected through a nonpartisan process, with membership composed of equal numbers of Democrats, Republicans, and independents."