The game of gerrymandering

Democratic congressional candidates nationwide got a million more votes in 2012 than the Republican candidates did, but the Republicans have a 238 to 201 majority in the House of Representatives.  Conservative and right-wing organizations focused on state legislatures, and gerrymandered district boundaries to give the advantage to Republicans.

Some of the techniques are shown in the video:

  • Cracking.  If a community votes for the other party, break it up among many congressional or legislative districts so they are a minority in every one.
  • Packing.  If your supporters are geographically scattered, extend and distort the district boundaries to gather them in.
  • Bleaching.  If members of a minority group vote for the other party, gerrymander them out of your district.
  • Hijacking or kidnaping.  Change the district boundary to separate the other party’s candidate from her neighbors and require her to seek votes in a distant community.

Gerrymandering is used by both parties, and it is wrong no matter who does it.  But at the present moment in history, it is the Republicans who need it to retain national power.

Click on the following links for more information.

House Seats vs. Popular Vote by ProPublica.

The Hidden Hands in Redistricting by ProPublica.

How Dark Money Helped the Republicans Hold the House and Hurt Voters by ProPublica.

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