Thursday, February 23, 2012

Gerrymandering - Geological Deceit? - 2

In the first post of this series, before the national census in 2010, we began a series discussing gerrymandering.

Some people say "Jerry who ... Seinfeld?", when they hear the word "gerrymandering".

Yet, it is quite an important subject, so people should read up on it.

A new census must be done each ten years, under our constitutional law, so the possible problems of gerrymandering are repetitive, constantly threatening our election system.

Some expert commentators are even saying that redistricting / gerrymandering is more of a danger to some aspects of election democracy than Citizens United v. F.E.C. is:
We have little real choice in our elections. Even with low double digit congressional approval ratings, my guess is that at least 80 percent of House incumbents seeking reelection will win. Here is a number that should open some eyes: 95 percent of all House members who sought reelection between 1982 through 2004 were reelected. Expanding the time horizon changes the numbers but not their effect. According to the Center for Responsive Politics, between 1964 and 2010, the incumbent in the House was reelected between 85 percent and 98 percent of the time; the majority of those election cycles resulted in incumbent reelection rates of at least 90 percent. Those are Kim Jung Il and Robert Mugabe numbers that legitimately call into question the fundamental tenet of American democracy: the use of elections express the representative will of the people. A system with historically low approval ratings for Congress yet ridiculously high reelection rates cannot be seen as an accurate reflection of voter will ... The policy consequences that stem from illegitimate political power have long compromised the American political system. Concerned activists and pundits must pay more attention to this critical issue.
(Dr. Michael Fauntroy, emphasis added). At the time of the original post in this series, a scenario existed where there were strangely shaped districts in every state.

These congressional House districts are made by even using parts of counties, not all of the country, to jigsaw / gerrymander U.S. Congressional Districts:
California District 1 snakes its way through all or part of:  Del Norte, Humboldt, Mendocino, Lake, Sonora, and Napa counties; while California District 2 snakes its way thru Siskiyou, Trinity, Shasta, Tahama, Glenn, Butte, Yuba, Colusa, Sutter, and Yolo counties.

Texas District 25 snakes its way through all or part of:  Hidalgo, Starr, Jim Hogg, Duval, Live Oak, Karnes, Gonzales, Caldwell, and Travis counties. Texas District 28 is similar.

Utah District 1 snakes its way through all or part of:  Juab, Tooele, Box Elder, Cache, Rich, Summit, Morgan, Davis, Webber, and Salt Lake counties.
Indiana Congressional District 3 snakes its way through all or part of: Allen, Elkhart, Lagrange, Steuben, Kosciusko, Noble, De Kalb, and Whitley counties.
Indiana District 9 snakes its way through all or part of: Monroe, Brown, Bartholomew, Jackson, Jennings, Ripley, Dearborn, Ohio, Switzerland, Jefferson, Scott, Clark, Floyd, Harrison, Perry, Crawford, Washington, Orange, Dubois, and Spencer counties.

Alabama District 7 snakes its way through all or part of:  Tuscaloosa, Pickens, St. Clair, Greene, Hale, Perry, Sumter, Chocktaw, Marengo, Dallas, Wilcox, and Clarke counties.

New York District 23 snakes its way through all or part of:  Clinton, Franklin, Essex, Hamilton, Fulton, Saint Lawrence, Jefferson, Lewis, Oswego, Oneida, and Madison counties.

North Carolina District 1 snakes its way through all or part of:  Northampton, Warren, Vance, Granville, Halifax, Hertford, Gates, Bertie, Edgecombe, Martin, Washington, Pitt, Greene, Craven, Beufort, Jones, Lenoir, Wilson, Wayne, Carteret, Pasquotank, Perquimans, and Chowan counties.
In the above list showing the congressional districts prior to the 2010 census, Indiana District 9 snaked through all or part of 20 counties, North Carolina District 1 snaked through all or part of 23 counties.

I think the point about snaking has been made.

Andrew Breitbart, suffering from severe Stockholm Syndrome and propaganda induced dementia, accuses Occupy Movement of raping the people:

The next post in this series is here, the previous post in this series is here.

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