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How Democrats may use election wins to redraw voter districts

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By Joshua A Douglas

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The comment that both parties engage in gerrymandering does not describe the reality. There are many more states gerrymandered by Republicans than by Democrats, and not just because Republicans won control of more states in the 2010 elections. Here in California Dems control both the legislature and the governor's mansion, but did not engage in gerrymandering, on ideological grounds. Personally, I am well aware of the downside of not engaging in gerrymandering in the Democratic controlled states. California, with 53 representatives in the House, could go a long way toward reducing the Republican majority in the House if we redistricted in the way that GOPers have in states that they control. Over the past decade there have been numerous instances where Democrats got majorities in Republican controlled states, and ended up with a small fraction of the total representatives in the House of Representatives from those states.

A downside to gerrymandering is that the party which engages in such activities tends to become controlled by the most extreme members of their own party. We see today that Republicans, with their heavily Republican leaning districts, have little incentive to listen to moderates. That might also happen to the Democratic party, if they decided to engage in gerrymandering. Personally, I would like to see all gerrymandering outlawed, so that our country can once again marginalize extremists.

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Gerrymandering happens everywhere. It is a flaw in the system. Seems like a "non-partisan think tank" could create/advertise they have a fairly representative district-drawing program that would make things fairer. Though, the minorities in those areas would be unhappy.

The goal is to end up with elected officials who actually represent, overall, the wishes of the populace, right? In 7th grade social studies we learned how hard actually doing that was. As long as the 2-3 main parties disproportionately rule over everyone, there will always be gerrymandering at some level.

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