Missouri Republicans’ plan to ask voters to repeal changes they made to the state’s redistricting process took another step forward Monday, but not before one Republican predicted its doom.
The plan as written would seek approval to gut key provisions of a constitutional amendment known as Clean Missouri that won the backing of 62 percent of voters statewide in 2018.
It would do away with plans for a nonpartisan demographer to draft maps before political appointees and put concerns about whether districts will have competitive races on the backburner.
Early analysis suggested that second provision would have led to Republicans losing seats in the next decade, prompting many GOP lawmakers to scramble to repeal it.
But just before his committee voted to send the plan to the House floor for a final vote, Rep. Rocky Miller, R-Lake Ozark, said he thought the plan would “go down in flames if it makes it to the ballot.”
“This will be as bad as right-to-work,” he added, referring to the anti-union law struck down by voters despite GOP lawmakers’ overwhelming support for the idea.
Miller also said he’d heard from the state Republican Party that the plan as written contains “errors” that need to be fixed, though he did specify what they were.
He noted that making any fixes would mean sending the legislation back to the Senate with less than a week until the session ends, though. If that happened, Democrats would likely try and filibuster it until the end of session Friday.
“I think at this late hour would be a death sentence,” he said.
It was not immediately clear who at the state GOP had contacted Miller with concerns. Multiple party officials pointed out the party’s executive committee had not taken an official position on the current version of the legislation, which has been rewritten multiple times this session.
Miller nevertheless voted to send the plan to the House floor for a final vote, as did all other Republicans on the committee present at the meeting. All three Democrats voted against the idea.