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Top Assembly Republican Pitches Measure To Make Legislative Districts More Competitive In NJ

By Ian Bush

PHILADELPHIA (CBS) -- Is it too much of a cakewalk for incumbent New Jersey lawmakers to keep their seats?

One of the state's top Republicans says voters should get to decide whether they want to see more competition.

The legislature splits 60-40 in favor of Democrats. The districts won't be redrawn until 2021 -- but it could come years before that, if Assembly Minority Leader Jon Bramnick gets his way.

"My proposal would amend the constitution," Bramnick said.

To force the commission that comes up with the new lines to balance, as best it can, the number of Republicans and Democrats in each district.

"Of course, you can't do that in all districts, but you can make the redistricting process one that results in more competitive districts," Bramnick said,

Lawmakers would have to 'earn' their seats, and Bramnick says that would make them less partisan and encourage common sense to prevail.

"They can vote their conscience, they can compromise, they can find middle ground," Bramnick said.

Whether Democrats agree with Bramnick's take is another matter -- and their support is essential if it has a chance to land on the ballot.

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