Expect to see TV ads promoting the citizen initiative to remove politicians from the legislative map-making process.
The Independent Map Coalition has begun to purchase $1 million in cable and satellite TV ad time. Spokesman Jim Bray said previous efforts to get an amendment in front of voters didn’t get this far. This time the group’s nearly 600,000 signatures have been verified.
Bray said this is just the beginning of the voter education campaign.
“This is like running a gubernatorial campaign statewide,” Bray said. “You've got to hit everybody from Cairo to Waukegan and in between, and explain to them what redistricting is and why it needs to change.”
Bray said there's still a court challenge over the amendment's constitutionality that could go all the way to the state Supreme Court.
“But we can’t wait for the court to decide up or down on it, and we’re still hopeful it will be on the ballot, of course; so making that plan, we have to start our education campaign now,” he said.
The campaign isn’t isolated to cable and satellite TV channels. Bray said voters will also be reached through digital media messages on computers, tablets and smartphones.
A Cook County judge is expected to rule on the legal challenge July 21.