By Peter Schrag
So the Republicans have formally thrown in the towel on their referendum to block use of the new state Senate maps drawn last year by the presumably non-partisan Citizens Redistricting Commission.
The main point of the referendum, the Republicans said, was to block use of the maps in this year’s election cycle. When the state Supreme Court ordered the maps to be used, their campaign people said, there was no point in pursuing it. The measure, Proposition 40, will however remain on the ballot. It’s just that there’ll be no GOP campaign.
But that may not end the confusion since, given the peculiarities of the California referendum process, a “no” vote is in fact a “yes” vote. Any voter wanting to reject the referendum in November, increase the Democrats’ chances of gaining real control in the Senate, or punish the GOP for attacking a process that it had once supported will have to be wily enough to vote ”yes.”