Baikonur, Kazakhstan, Earth -- 22 May 2057: This day saw a blustery debate in the Trapezoid over a proposal put unexpectedly forward to increase the number of senators and electors composing the Saturnine Confederacy's share of the Stellar Parliament. There is little doubt that this proposal was strategically motivated, coming as it does so close on the heels of the bizarre obstinacy of the Confederate Authority in the matter of the crashed deep-space probe.
The bill as it stands would hand the Confederacy the equivalent of 5 full districts' worth of senators, putting it on par with the Federation of Asteroidal Polities in the Senate, though as in the case of the FAP the regional government would remain in the hands of the Confederate Authority. The proposal also triples the number of sovereign states into which the Confederacy is carved, and thus the number of electors seated in the Trapezoid. The bill was tabled by Ras Jagadbarty, Libertarian Elector for Saturnine Confederacy-Tighe Station, who contented himself with a brief speech pointing out that the growing population of the Saturnine colonies entitles them to a redistricting review and offering his proposal as the logical solution.
Not so the other Saturnine Electors, who gave full-throated and sometimes tawdry approval to the plan. Libertarian elector Caspar de Vries of Saturnine Confederacy-Dione said that it was "about time the Confederacy got its due," and that "the bureaucracy of Baikonur has spent far too long withholding and pettifogging the rights that we are clearly due as a partner with this Alliance". Morgen Flagneflan, Corporatist elector for Saturnine Confederacy-Titan Polar North, spent the full allotment of eir speaking time railing against the "cultural imperialism" of the Alliance centre, which e likened to "societal genocide", "the repeated rape of our Confederate pride", and "a political Holocaust" before being cut off by the Chancellor. Libertarian elector Tinus Parvos Naturidan of Saturnine Confederacy-Rhea stated that "the Confederacy is at last ready to rise up and demand its God-given rights to self-determination and full representation, to have its day in the sun alongside the inner planets, to enjoy the fruits of our labour and to walk our own soil untrammeled by the hand of jealous and small-minded Socialist sycophants." The speeches began at times to sound like a full-fledged declaration of secession. Like-minded partisand from throughout the system joined in, with Libertarian Party director Azimak Titslinger, elector for Anders-Mircordia, calling the redistricting "a move whose time has come", and Traditionalist elector Alex Ross of Great Plains-Lonestar spoke stirringly of "our Confederate brothers, who carry the spirit of the frontier under their hats, taking the risks we of the centre dare not take and asking naught for it beyond the opportunity to full representation before the law of our grand Alliance".
Leading the charge against the immense scope of the redistricting, Socialist elector Maarta Schengen of Scandinavia-Sweden called the move a "naked power grab" by the Saturnines, accusing them of "flexing their muscle" and attemting to "upset the applecart" in the wake of the probe scandal. She called on members of the governing coalition to "resist the lure of these pretty words and refuse to disturb the balance of power in the Trapezoid." Norris Becker, Communitarian elector for Great Plains-Greater Saskatchewan, allowed that while "population growth might entitle the Saturnines to another 5 senators and a few more electoral states, the proposal before this house is a bridge too far," while Hyperboria-Nautilus' Anarchist elector Titus Netrosiam vowed to "hold the line against the crypto-fascists of the so-called Confederate Authority capital complex". In the end, however, splits in the Communitarian party and a sizeable contingent of back-bench Technocrats managed to get the proposal sent to the Senate redistricting committee on a vote of 307-306.