Gerrymandering of Districts for Political Gain
Gerrymandering of Districts is something North Carolina knows a lot about, and is suffering through. How else can the party with the least number of votes win the greatest number of seats in Congress? Hmmm, its strange that keeps on happening in NC.
When the majority of the popular vote goes to one party and the other party claims victory, (as a result of gerrymandered Districts) democracy gets broken and our representation doesn’t represent us.
When the popular vote goes to one party and the other party claims victory, you can be sure the will of the people is not being done. When the will of the people is not being done, democracy is just a word that has lost its meaning.
I’m running for US Congress to address issues like this. I want wrest power out of the hands of corrupt politicians who DO NOT represent their constituents, and to put the power back into the hands of the people; the working people.
In the 2016 election cycle, Democrats cast more votes overall, but due to gerrymandering, the Republicans were able to take and keep control of Congress.
Republican Mark Walker was NOT elected by a fair balance of the electorate, but by the 6th District’s gerrymandered lines that left even Republicans without a choice.
One Person = One Vote — Majority Rules in a Democracy
We were taught in Civics class, that one person, one vote is the basis of our governing principles. As concerned citizens, we register to vote, and on election day, we go vote, we voice our concerns and desires with our votes. When the votes are counted, the majority opinion is supposed to carry the day, and govern. If only it were that simple. Our representation in Congress is based on population. That population is broken down into Districts. Our representatives come from Districts.
Every 10 years the Districts are redrawn, by the party in the majority at the time, to reflect the most recent Census data. Gerrymandering is drawing the District lines so that majority voters are grouped together into a few large districts and minority voters are spread out over smaller but more numerous Districts. (Democrats have done this but the Republicans have made it a science.) After the votes are tallied, the District goes to either Democrats or Republicans. At this point, the number of votes in the popular vote no longer matters. If there are more Districts that go to the Republicans than to the Democrats, then the election goes to the Republicans, and vice versa. If there are a million more votes cast in 3 large Districts than in 7 small Districts, the election goes to the majority, which is the 7 small Districts, (7 to 3 majority). It doesn’t seem right, does it? That is why it is so important to have representative Districts. Gerrymandering is the opposite of representation.
Redistricting Every 10 Years
The United States is divided into 435 Congressional Districts. Those Districts are used to determine the number of representatives each state will have in Congress based on population, (US Census provides population numbers). Each district elects a representative to the U.S. House of Representatives for a two-year term. Those representatives go to Washington to manage the People’s Business, but they seem to be beyond accountability when the People’s Business doesn’t get done.
How can the majority rule if the majority is sequestered into a few Districts while the minority is spread out over many Districts? Gerrymandering is a trick to make the minority appear as the majority. Its a clever trick to be sure, but if the majority is supposed to rule in a democracy, then we need to employ fair ways to identify that majority. Obviously, majorities have easily been identified, and then used to redraw District lines to favor the party that is doing the drawing, to keep them in power.
In 2010, the Tea Party campaigned so hard toward the folks who were disappointed in having a Black man for a president that they won many seats in Congress, both in the US Congress and in state Congresses across the nation. And since it was time to redraw the District lines, the new Tea Party caucus went straight to work, just like they promised.
In May 2017, the Supreme Court of the United States struck down 2 of NC’s Districts, citing that they were drawn unconstitutionally. In this case, Republican lawmakers in NC openly stated that race was a factor in drawing one of the Districts but not the other. The Supreme Court upheld the decision of a federal appeals court, which had ruled that the District boundaries were an unconstitutional effort to “target African-Americans with almost surgical precision.”
Yes, the Republican law makers in North Carolina kept on appealing the decision of the Appellate Court because they still want to win elections, even if they can’t get more votes.
Rigging an Election
1So, how does a state correct the District boundaries when they’ve been manipulated to look like NC’s? 2Who is to blame? 3How can the damage be repaired? To answer: (1) Using an impartial committee to draw District lines is the most common technique for remaining fair and impartial. (2) Lots of people are to blame, gerrymandering of Districts is done in many states. (3) Send Gerald Wong to the US Congress, where he will put forth legislation to make it mandatory for District lines to be drawn by impartial committee.
The blame has to fall on both parties, because both Democrats and Republicans have adopted the use of Gerrymandering to produce a false majority. This is a problem that effects all American citizens, regardless of party affiliation, because it skews the vote in favor of whichever party drew the lines for the Districts in that state. It also effects national elections because the statewide vote, tallied by District, determines to whom the state’s electoral votes are granted.
The popular vote counts for very little when the Districts in many states have been manipulated to disenfranchise certain demographic groups. Do you get angry if your one vote doesn’t count? I do.
Donate Now to Fund My Campaign
As we all know, campaigning for office is expensive, and even the billionaire Donald Trump didn’t fund his own campaign. (He loaned himself the money to get started and was repaid from funds donated to the campaign.)
I am certainly NOT Trump. But I need funding too. When I am elected, I will speak out boldly about the way gerrymandering effects ordinary people and dilutes the strength of your votes. I will vote to make it mandatory to have impartial committees to redraw District lines using only data from the US Census.
Gerrymandering has not improved the system of governance, it has prevented true representation of the people, by the people and for the people. We must stop this now!