Hazel Dukes, president of the state chapter of the NAACP, urged Gov. Andrew Cuomo today to veto the new district lines for legislative offices, calling the lines “absolutely disrespectful” to all ethnic groups.
Before the announcement of the event, Dukes told Gannett’s Albany Bureau that the lines are unacceptable by cutting up cities into various Senate districts and leaving minority voters disenfranchised. The New York Times wrote today about the concern among minority groups.
“I understand democracy. But this is beyond democracy,” Dukes said. “This is hungry politicians, and they are doing a disservice to New Yorkers and we’re not going to stand for it.”
Dukes said Cuomo needs to veto the lines — something he has pledged to do — or the NAACP will look to sue. She said they already have lawyers reviewing the redistricting documents.
“We’ll be ready to do whatever it takes to overturn this,” Dukes said. “I hope the governor will keep his promise of vetoing. We’re calling on him to do that.”
Cuomo said yesterday he would do just that, saying “If they send me this bill with these lines, I’m going to veto it.”
The first lawsuit over redistricting was filed earlier today by Senate Democrats, and that dealt with the addition of a 63rd Senate seat. Assemblyman David Gantt, D-Rochester, said he also may sue over Rochester’s lines, as may the NAACP in Buffalo.