FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE
April 28, 2021
PHOENIX, AZ – The Arizona Independent Redistricting Commission is currently considering a bid from HaystaqDNA to provide mapping services. The firm is “partly a successor agency to Strategic Telemetry, the mapping consultant for the last commission that drew Arizona’s current congressional and legislative districts in 2011” according to an article from The Arizona Mirror.
Strategic Telemetry CEO Ken Strasma and Senior Analyst Willie Desmond drew district maps for the previous IRC that violated the Arizona State Constitution, broke apart cities, counties, and communities of interest, and were the subject of a lawsuit that had to be decided by the United States Supreme Court. Ken Strasma is the current CEO of HaystaqDNA, and Willie Desmond is currently Vice President.
Furthermore, HaystaqDNA proudly displays on their website they are the firm that helped “the [Bernie] Sanders and Obama campaigns make history”. The firm is proudly and openly partisan, which directly conflicts with the IRC’s non-partisan mission.
Given these facts, Fair Maps Arizona strongly opposes the hiring of HaystaqDNA by the Independent Redistricting Commission. HaystaqDNA has demonstrated that they were willing to disregard the requirements of the Arizona Constitution in drawing district maps and there is no reason to believe that they would not do so again.
Fair Maps Arizona encourages the current Independent Redistricting Commission to contract with another firm that has had no dealings with a past commission.
About Fair Maps Arizona
Fair Maps Arizona was founded to help ensure the IRC draws maps that comply with the Arizona Constitution and are fair to all Arizonans. FMA is dedicated to educating Arizonans about the IRC process and to encouraging participation in this vital process in maintaining our democracy.
Visit our website for more information: https://fairmapsarizona.org