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Gerrymandering 101


Everybody does it. Just get over that fact. Changing the districts is a political reality that is both extremely powerful, and never going away.

Everybody complains about it, yet we get this trope shoved down our throat just about every contested election.

But, what is it, really? Zombie explains.


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Comments (10)

In spite of their rampant s... (Below threshold)

In spite of their rampant stupidity, the people of California decided enough was enough. A commission was established to choose 16 citizens who would reapportion the states districts for state-wide representation. There were 64,000 applicants (no politicians wanted or desired). The field is currently being narrowed.

In the recent election, it was also decided to have the same commisssion do redistricting for federal elections. A competing proposition proposed to cancel the state commission - it lost. You'll never guess who backed pulling the commission.

Let's play 'name that Party'.

Ironic isn't it that just 2... (Below threshold)
jim m:

Ironic isn't it that just 2 years ago the dems were crowing about their "permanent majority" and how the GOP or other second party would be relegated to insignificance for 40 years.

Now they are seeing the fruits of their arrogance. By pissing off the public they have now handed reapportionment into the hands of their political adversaries. Not only did they drive the public toward the GOP but they have given the GOP unprecedented dominance precisely at the moment when they would be in a position to consolidate the foothold they have been given for the next decade.

Am I predicting a lengthy GOP majority? By no means. If this election taught us anything it is that any party can sufficiently anger the public into driving them from office.

I am simply enjoying the well deserved comeuppance for the dems.

"Permanent majority" = Arro... (Below threshold)

"Permanent majority" = Arrogance proceedeth the fall.

I kept reminding the folks ... (Below threshold)

I kept reminding the folks crowing about how the left had won that the political pendulum always swings back, and the harder it's pushed the harder it swings the other way.

It'd be well to remember that - no matter which side of the pendulum's swing you prefer. MY ideal state is right about the middle. Of course, some won't see that as far enough left or right - but wild swings don't do the country any good at all.

Do I see this last election as a far right swing? No - it went about halfway to the right as the 2008 swing had gone to the left off the center. But we're going to be a long time undoing the damage from the 2008 swing - and the Dems ain't out yet. There's still the lame-duck session, and they could drag things pretty hard to the right again...

Oh boo hoo hoo. Those right... (Below threshold)

Oh boo hoo hoo. Those rightwingers are rigging the elections!! I better send my panthers to investigate? booo hooo hooo..

We had an amendment on the ... (Below threshold)

We had an amendment on the ballot this election to redefine redistricting rules. It passed. If you ever want to know if something is a good idea look at who's upset over it. Corrine Brown has her knickers in a knot.

Great. If Republicans take... (Below threshold)
James H:

Great. If Republicans take over the state legislature here, my district will likely become even safer for my Democratic congressman.

I for one am pleased about ... (Below threshold)

I for one am pleased about what the Indiana Secretary of State (now Congressional Representative-elect, Todd Rokita) proposed for redistricting. Its one of the most sensible, logical and helpful plans I have ever seen. And it looks very hopeful that it may be implemented!


Isn't the Dems who usually ... (Below threshold)

Isn't the Dems who usually come up with these ridiculous gerrymandered districts to protect themselves? I've thought about that fact and considered that they are the ones who always seem to have to tilt the playing field their way. I guess the implication is that on a level ("fair") playing field they would have less than a "fair" chance. That gives me some hope in the American people.

If you want to see what a p... (Below threshold)

If you want to see what a permanent majority party will do to Congressional districts, just have a look at my native state of Massachusetts. More specifically, the Fourth District. Look what's been done to keep the incumbent safe in his sinecure.

This is what engenders arrogance on the part of some officeholders - and resentment on the part of the voters!






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