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State Senator to Discuss Legal Challenges to Redistricting Plan at Canadian County Democrats’ July 12 Meeting

posted Jul 6, 2011, 1:07 AM by Jody Harlan   [ updated Oct 29, 2015, 9:25 PM ]
EL RENO, Okla -- State Senator Jim Wilson (D-Tahequah) will discuss proposed constitutional challenges to the new Senate redistricting plan at the next Canadian County Democrats’ meeting at 7 p.m. on Tues., July 12.

Sen. Wilson and colleagues recently filed a petition asking the Oklahoma Supreme Court to set aside the Republican-passed redistricting plan on grounds that it splits political subdivisions in violation of the state Constitution, making it more difficult for some communities, including Yukon, to elect a representative from that city or town.

Seating is available for all Democrats on a first come, first served basis for the free meeting at Canadian Valley Technology Center, located at 6506 E. Highway 66 between Yukon and El Reno.

The state House redistricting plan proceeded smoothly; however, the state Senate was criticized for paying a GOP political consultant $127,500 for redistricting advice since May 2009.

Sen Wilson is a leader in a organization known as OK Fair Play, which opposes the redistricting plan is OK Fair Play.
"If we are successful, the Supreme Court will direct the redistricting commission to draw a new plan, which keeps political subdivision whole and gives citizens a better opportunity for fair representation," Sen. Wilson said.

"Whether, we win or lose with the Supreme Court petition, we are circulating a statutory initiative petition requiring 83,000 signatures to repeal the Senate redistricting law and set forth guidelines for future redistricting."

"When we have the signatures needed to secure a place on the ballot, we will enter the last phase, which is to promote the people’s right to fair representation all the way through the election in Nov. 2012," Sen. Wilson explained.
Sen. Wilson was born in Lake Mills, Wis. He attended school in Wis. and Okla and graduated from Pauls Valley High School before serving in the U.S. Marine Corps. After completing a combat tour in Vietnam, he completed a bachelor’s of science degree in mathematics at Oklahoma State University.

Before starting his own computer business, Sen. Wilson worked for the Oklahoma Crime Commission in Oklahoma City, where he implemented a statewide computer system that assisted state and local law enforcement.

He currently serves on the state Senate Appropriations, Finance, Health and Human Services and Retirement and Insurance committees and the Appropriations Subcommittee for Health and Human Services.

Sen. Wilson is a member of the Democratic Party, Tahlequah Area Chamber of Commerce, the American Legion, the Kiwanis Club of Tahlequah and Board of Directors for Thompson House.

He and his wife, Connie, reside in Tahlequah. They have three children, David, Kim and Jamie.

Donations to fund the initiative to repeal the redistricting law may sent to OKFAIRPLAY, Unified Strategies Associates, 3017 N Stiles, Suite 103, Oklahoma City, OK, 73105.

The Canadian County Democrats meet at 7 p.m. on the second Tues. of each month (except Dec.) at Canadian Valley Technology Center, 6505 E. Highway 66 between Yukon and El Reno.