On Monday morning Smart Politics will live blog a conference on redistricting reform in Minnesota at the Humphrey Institute.

Toward More Open Government:
A Conference on Reforming the Redistricting Process

Monday, December 1, 2008
8:30am – 12:00pm
Humphrey Forum
Hubert H. Humphrey Institute of Public Affairs

From the Institute’s Center for the Study of Politics and Governance:

“How are the boundaries of legislative districts determined? In Europe, non-partisan boundary commissions draw the boundaries. In the United States, state legislatures usually draw the boundaries for their own districts. Civic groups warn that legislators draw their own districts in ways to help themselves and their fellow partisans. In Minnesota, the process has the added challenge of not working over the past several cycles of redistricting. These questions take on urgency now because Minnesota may lose a seat in the U.S. House of Representatives owing to the state’s population size relative to that of other states.

The process to draw legislative districts is picking up speed in Minnesota. Leaders and citizens have questions about how the redistricting process will work, what risk Minnesota faces in terms of losing a congressional seat, and how other states draw legislative districts.

Toward More Open Government: A Conference on Reforming the Redistricting Process will examine the current process for drawing legislative districts, learn lessons from other states approaches to drawing legislative districts, and consider the risk of losing a congressional seat.

Center director Larry Jacobs will be joined by Michael McDonald of George Mason University, Minnesota State Demographer Tom Gillaspy, John Griffin of the University of Notre Dame, legislators, and other experts to discuss this timely issue.�?

View the conference agenda here.