House Minority Leader Lawrence F. Cafero Jr., R-Norwalk, a co-chairman of the bipartisan Reapportionment Commission, is upset that the office of Gov. Dannel P. Malloy has filed a brief in the congressional redistricting case before the state Supreme Court.

“The governor has no existing role to play under the State Constitution,” Cafero said. “This is clearly a political process that is laid out for the legislature and the commission. I think his intervention now smacks of potential undue influence with the Supreme Court. He alone has the authority to name Supreme Court justices and the governor has stated publicly he vehemently opposes the Republican re-districting proposals.”

Technically, it is up to the governor to renominate justices to a new term every eight years. By custom, however, justices are reappointed and serve until the mandatory retirement age of 70.

Andrew McDonald, the governor’s general counsel, said Malloy has every right to be heard.

“Rep. Cafero is simply mistaken. Connecticut’s constitution specifically provides that once the commission Rep. Cafero co-chaired failed to fulfill its obligations, ‘any registered voter’ could participate in the Supreme Court proceedings,” he said. “The governor had urged the members of the commission to get this job done. Now that it is in the Supreme Court, he intends to advocate for a redistricting plan that is fair to all of Connecticut’s citizens and is accomplished within the timelines set forth in the constitution. We will not be withdrawing from the case.”

Mark is the Capitol Bureau Chief and a co-founder of CT Mirror. He is a frequent contributor to WNPR, a former state politics writer for The Hartford Courant and Journal Inquirer, and contributor for The New York Times.

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