State House Speaker Christopher Donovan, D-Meriden, has stepped down from the legislative panel overseeing redistricting in Connecticut, following complaints that his inclusion on the panel was in conflict with his political aspirations.
Donovan gave up his post on the Reapportionment Commission on Wednesday after the panel voted unanimously on separate plans to reset the lines for Connecticut’s General Assembly House and Senate districts. The commission, which was under a deadline Wednesday to set those new boundaries as well as vote on new congressional district lines in Connecticut, has asked the state’s Supreme Court for a 30-day extension to set new congressional boundaries.
Donovan today said that with the House and Senate work completed, he decided to step aside in order to remove any political implications as the commission moves forward.
Donovan is a candidate in the 2012 5th Congressional District race, one of the districts that will come under review by the Reapportionment Commission. in redrawing district lines if he is a candidate in that district.
Donovan today said politics has not played a role in the commission’s work, but he opted to step aside to remove even the appearance that politics was at play when the new congressional lines are drawn.
“On the congressional side there are those who are trying to make it a partisan issue with me being on it. I want there to be an agreement and I don’t want to make it a political issue.”
He said he has sent a letter to Gov. Dannel P. Malloy asking him to appoint House Majority Leader Brendan Sharkey, a Democrat, to fill his vacancy.