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Constitutional Revision Study Documents of the Constitutional Convention Commission, 1968
Volume 138, Page 150   View pdf image (33K)
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LEGISLATIVE BRANCH

 
 

formation of multimember and flotorial
districts or even the violation of county
lines in order to prevent undue popula-
tion variations. Also, even if county
lines were to be inviolate, other appor-
tionment plans were possible which
would have substantially smaller devia-
tions. The Court then remanded the
case for consideration of these other
possibilities.
In the Kilgarlin case, the maximum
deviation was 15 per cent. The maxi-
mum deviation in Maryland, under
Senate Bill 5, is 18 per cent, while the
largest and smallest Senate districts
have a combined variation of 34 per
cent from the population mean per sen-
ator. The parallel figure for the House
is 64 per cent. Thus Kilgarlin strongly
suggests that the Supreme Court might
refuse to uphold Maryland's present
apportionment scheme, particularly if
there is an alternative apportionment
which also respects county lines but
which has smaller deviations from the
mathematical average for population
per representative.
Data from the 1970 census will be
available by 1972, and a new appor-
150

tionment will be necessary for the 1972
elections, if not before. The omens are
clear. The new apportionment, whether
in 1972 or sooner, will have to substan-
tially reduce this deviation from the
average population per representative
that now exists.
Although not yet accomplished,
achievement of the destined goal is now
clearly in sight one man, one vote.
This, as noted above, represents a com-
plete break with Maryland practice
under which neither the House nor the
Senate was apportioned strictly accord-
ing to population. Had the legislatures
of Maryland and other states been will-
ing to apportion one house on the basis
of population, and to reapportion that
house as population patterns changed,
it is probable that the reapportionment
cases would never have arisen and that
the states could have continued with
one house based on counties, areas, or
other nonpopulation factors. The recal-
citrance of the legislatures foreclosed
this possibility and unwittingly led to
the revolutionary change in apportion-
ment practices that is now being
consummated.

 

 
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Constitutional Revision Study Documents of the Constitutional Convention Commission, 1968
Volume 138, Page 150   View pdf image (33K)
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