Discussion: Democrats Need Voters' Help To Fix Gerrymandering. Will They Get It?

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The best way to ensure fair districts (IMO) is to have them drawn by a computer using only population data and town boundaries as input. This program should be open source so that anyone can see how it works and the inputs should be drawn made available for inspection to all to ensure that they are not being manipulated. The good news is that such a program is already in existence… Auto-Redistrict.

It is very likely that this would bring howls from both Democrats and Republicans… but that’s just too bad… it is the best way to take politics out of redistricting which should have been the case from the beginning.

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The idea in plain English is very simple. The people who want to take away your health insurance rigged the map to make sure they outvote you. People who really live here deserve a fighting chance.

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What does “ease voting rights” mean? I had to click through to the linked article to understand that it meant “reduce voting restrictions”.

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That’s a really good article, Rachel and TPM.

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I think that the shape of many gerrymandered districts helps a lot for explaining to people who aren’t voting geeks. You only do that kind of thing if you’re looking to choose your voters.

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In he same vein as “Truth has a liberal bias”, fair re-districting favors Democrats, almost exclusively.

Republicans have to cheat the truth itself to stay in power.

But, that is nothing new, it is just more exposed all the time.

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Political Science students of the future will use it as reference material.

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Not hardly… that is an uninformed opinion. See my first comment.

I don’t say Dems never do it, some of the California districts are quite contorted. but Republicans really push the envelope, any form of fair districting favors Democrats.

Most of us would be more than happy to see the computer version enacted.

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The reason this happened in the first place is that Democrats sat on their buts during the 2010 elections. We already know how unscrupulous Republicans are. Enough about fair didtricts. The states we take over, we should gerrymander the hell out of our districts to minimize ANY chances for Republicans to win. We have to stop playing good government patty cake.

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I feel your pain and agree that Dems need to play hardball like the GOP does. But I think playing hardball should mean not letting the GOP get away with dirty tricks as opposed to resorting to dirty - i.e. undemocratic - tricks themselves.

So Dems should have raised holy hell over the GOP not allowing the Garland nomination to even reach the hearing stage. And Dems should have investigated the various bush admin atrocities more thoroughly (and made political hay of the GOP’s ridiculous and ceaseless stream of investigations of Benghazi!, Benghazi ***Benghazi!***). And Dems should not be afraid to screech and howl and fight over real threats to democracy as loud and as hard as the GOP does over the faux threats to democracy that they cultivate and harvest from the fetid fever swamp of their various organs of propaganda. (Good news: the era of trump has finally put some backbone into at least some Dems).

But Dems should not gerrymander. It is a thoroughly anti-democratic practice.

And besides, as @jep07 points out above, Dems don’t need to gerrymander - this country has enough progressive votes to enact progressive policies; it’s just that gerrymandering and voter suppression dilute those votes. No, as progressives, we can have our cake and eat it too: we can be against gerrymandering on both political and moral grounds. And we should be.

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Excellent piece! Other thing that we should be pushing for are ballot and state constitutional amendment initiatives to mandate Election Day Registration and Paper Ballots, as a remedy for those who have been purged from voter rolls, and so they can vote on ballots that actually get counted. You can even sell Election Day Registration by saying you can do it with a photo ID (while also having the provision that another registered voter who lives in your precinct can vouch for you by swearing an oath, under penalty of felony perjury, as we do it here in The Great State of Minnesota.) Pushing the photo ID requirement will get enough support from wingers to make truly bipartisan.