EDITORIAL: This is the map, GOP. Deal with it

York Dispatch

We get it, Pennsylvania Republicans. You don't like the new congressional map.

You think the state Supreme Court overstepped its bounds by redrawing the beautiful map you signed off on in 2011 — the one rightly derided as one of the country's most gerrymandered.

New congressional map chosen by the state Supreme Court and unveiled Feb. 19, 2018.

But it's time to move on. Let it go.

In January — seven years and three congressional terms after Republicans put their heavy thumb on the scale — the state Supreme Court ruled that map was unconstitutionally tilted and had to be replaced.

This should not have surprised anyone.

The 2011 map featured contorted districts — the 7th was quickly and surprisingly accurately mocked as "Goofy kicking Donald Duck" — along with districts that unnecessarily split cities up and meandered through counties.

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Despite cries from Pennsylvania Republicans, the court also ruled new, fair boundaries had to be in place right away — in time for the 2018 election.

When the Legislature and Gov. Tom Wolf couldn't agree on a map by Feb. 15, the court imposed its own. The U.S. Supreme Court and a panel of federal judges declined Republican pleas to intervene.

So now lawmakers, including three from York County, have signed on to legislation that would impeach four Democrats on the state Supreme Court. 

Pennsylvania's current congressional map.

Rep. Kristin Phillips-Hill, R-York Township, Rep. Dawn Keefer, R-Dillsburg, and Rep. Seth Grove, R-Dover Township, have joined a handful of other Republicans in this latest endeavor.

Keefer and Phillips-Hill both described the court's decision as a clear violation of the state constitution, which gives authority to the legislative and executive branches to draw these lines.

Yes, the constitution does give that power, but the judicial branch exists in part to ensure the legislative and executive branches don't overstep.

For three terms of Congress, the people of Pennsylvania were not properly represented. It's beyond time for change.

The new map has some quirks of its own — splitting York County over two districts is a new one, and the fact that the line also divides York Township between the two districts is what Phillips-Hill says is most disturbing to her.

But it does seem more likely to represent the actual population of Pennsylvania.

State Republicans need to stop whining about the court and get on with the job of governing all Pennsylvanians, not just the ones they chose.