New Political Lines May Be Flawed

February 1, 2012 Updated Feb 1, 2012 at 3:29 PM EDT

By WKBW News


New Political Lines May Be Flawed

February 1, 2012 Updated Feb 1, 2012 at 3:29 PM EDT

BUFFALO, N.Y. (WKBW) - The re-drawing of New York's political districts has many people up in arms across the state, and right here in Western New York.

"What we've seen is that the GOP has come forward with something that has reduced the impact and voting strength of people in the African American community," President of the Buffalo Branch of the NAACP Frank Mesiah said.

Mesiah was quoted in the New York Times, after writing a letter to Governor Cuomo voicing his concerns about this matter. He said lines are being drawn all across the state to separate minority voters in each district.

"You might call it "cracking". You crack the block and you separate them into different parts of the community. You haven't said they can't vote, but you have decreased the effectiveness, " Mesiah said.

The Senate Republicans and Assembly Democrats proposed the redistricting. Representatives from the groups said these lines were in no way drawn to exclude any one group. Mesiah disagrees and said it not only benefits the incumbent, but makes it nearly impossible for minorities to elect the candidate of their chose.

He said there is yet another problem.

"Many people in the community are not aware of the management of those parties and what they are doing. They don't really understand," Mesiah said.

Governor Cuomo has in the past and recently shown his discontent with these proposed district lines. Mesiah said he's hoping for a veto.

"We're asking the Governor to reject this redistricting plan being put forward. If that doesn't happen, then it is going to the courts," Mesiah said.