Editor, Daily Nexus,
Mr. Rughe’s column (“Students, Keep Your Votes at Home Where They Belong”, Daily Nexus, Jan. 23) is correct in that there is a problem in the 3rd District. He’s wrong to blame that problem on Isla Vista. I voted for Larry Mills, but I do not support the recall effort against Gail Marshall. I merely disagree with her policies; I don’t consider her patently unworthy to serve out her term. I will vote for her in a recall election, but I will vote against her in the next general election if I still live in this area (Does that make me acceptable to you, Mr. Rughe?). I live here year-round, so I’ll be here no matter when they hold the recall election.
With the county’s population so evenly divided between North and South, one of the districts will have to straddle the two regions. The South County portion of the district will be largely liberal no matter how it’s drawn and the North County portion will be largely conservative no matter how it’s drawn. Just look at the views of the other four supervisors. Isla Vista is not a liberal island in a conservative sea.
If Isla Vista were not in the 3rd District then some other portion of the South County would have to be included. The precise boundaries of the district would determine which side holds a 3-2 majority on the Board of Supervisors. Either way, the even division of Santa Barbara County’s population makes any 3rd District map vulnerable to charges of gerrymandering. Perhaps splitting the county in half is the best solution to this problem.