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Independent Okla. Voter Challenges State Question (Feb 16, 2011)

OKLAHOMA CITY (AP) — An independent Oklahoma voter says a recently enacted state ballot issue that revamps the state Apportionment Commission discriminates against independents.

Oral arguments were presented Wednesday before a state Supreme Court referee in a lawsuit filed last month by independent voter Clark Duffe. The lawsuit challenges State Question 748, a measure approved by voters in November that Duffe claims is unconstitutional.

The three-member Apportionment Commission is responsible for deciding the makeup of legislative voting districts if the Legislature fails to do so.

The ballot measure renamed the commission the Bipartisan Commission on Legislative Apportionment and increased its membership to seven. It also requires legislative leaders to each name a Democrat and a Republican to the commission. Duffe says that discriminates against independents.

Referee Barbara Swimley took the case under advisement.

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