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(Miami Herald)   Supreme court wrestles with the old question of whether it's better that legislators lie through their teeth or not say anything at all   (miamiherald.com) divider line 29
    More: Florida, Florida Supreme Court, legislators, League of Women Voters, Leon County, oaths  
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1727 clicks; posted to Politics » on 17 Sep 2013 at 8:52 AM (1 year ago)   |  Favorite    |   share:  Share on Twitter share via Email Share on Facebook   more»



29 Comments   (+0 »)
   
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ZAZ [TotalFark]
2013-09-17 07:11:02 AM
Should state lawmakers and their staffs be forced to answer questions and turn over documents about the redistricting process?

Lacking term limits, we got rid of our Speaker of the House after a federal appeals court panel called him out for lying under oath in a redistricting lawsuit. So strap them in and clamp their eyelids open and make them swear.
 
2013-09-17 08:55:48 AM
wanna' know how you can tell a CONgressman is lying?    their lips are moving.
 
2013-09-17 09:00:30 AM

ZAZ: Should state lawmakers and their staffs be forced to answer questions and turn over documents about the redistricting process?


Oh hells, yeah.
 
2013-09-17 09:04:04 AM
Anybody want to bet that these legislators screaming bloody murder were nodding in approval when Gingrich said Congress should have the right to force Supreme Court members to testify before it?
 
2013-09-17 09:04:27 AM
"Legislative privilege" has no place in an open democracy.
 
2013-09-17 09:08:16 AM
The Legislature fought back, arguing that the court has previously rejected efforts to force staff and lawmakers to testify, and that if they change course it will have a chilling effect on the legislative process.

 Asking legislators whether they're being blatantly partisan and in effect disenfranchising voters will have a chilling effect on their doing so in the future?


ak2.picdn.net
 
2013-09-17 09:14:18 AM

Uranus Is Huge!: "Legislative privilege" has no place in an open democracy.


Limited privilege? Hell yeah it does - like the US Constitution's Speech & Debate Clause. You don't want Executive (or worse, other-Legislative) shenanigans farking with the quorum, whip count or vote, and you do want Legislative speech absolutely protected (or at least as protected as yours & mine).

For what looks like open, naked politicking that runs specifically counter to the law as written? No immunity.
 
2013-09-17 09:15:10 AM

Karac: The Legislature fought back, arguing that the court has previously rejected efforts to force staff and lawmakers to testify, and that if they change course it will have a chilling effect on the legislative process.

 Asking legislators whether they're being blatantly partisan and in effect disenfranchising voters will have a chilling effect on their doing so in the future?


[ak2.picdn.net image 400x224]


I think it's clear that the people have no right to know about what the legislature does in their name, especially when it comes to legislative districting. The Constitution clearly intends that legislators should be allowed to carve up states into personal fiefdoms, and that the people should just shrug and go along with it.
 
2013-09-17 09:17:24 AM
img189.imageshack.us
 
2013-09-17 09:23:12 AM
Proportional party voting or multi-vote instant run-off please.  Gerrymandering is a symptom.
 
2013-09-17 09:27:26 AM

ikanreed: Proportional party voting or multi-vote instant run-off please.  Gerrymandering is a symptom.


Unfortunately it's also a symptom of a broken, corrupt system that would resist the adoption of proportional party voting or instant run off.  I think the court challenge has to be the first step, you can't skip it and go right to a fair, sensible system.
 
2013-09-17 09:38:33 AM

Mercutio74: ikanreed: Proportional party voting or multi-vote instant run-off please.  Gerrymandering is a symptom.

Unfortunately it's also a symptom of a broken, corrupt system that would resist the adoption of proportional party voting or instant run off.  I think the court challenge has to be the first step, you can't skip it and go right to a fair, sensible system.


No, due to America's perception of the Constitution as a literally sacred document, changing basic broken things that are boring will never happen.

//I honestly think we'd manage to do it without any republicans.
 
2013-09-17 09:39:37 AM

Mercutio74: you can't skip it and go right to a fair, sensible system.


The shock of free and fair elections followed by competent representation might just kill us.
 
2013-09-17 09:57:25 AM

Dr Dreidel: Uranus Is Huge!: "Legislative privilege" has no place in an open democracy.

Limited privilege? Hell yeah it does - like the US Constitution's Speech & Debate Clause. You don't want Executive (or worse, other-Legislative) shenanigans farking with the quorum, whip count or vote, and you do want Legislative speech absolutely protected (or at least as protected as yours & mine).

For what looks like open, naked politicking that runs specifically counter to the law as written? No immunity.


Good point. I'm thinking that Florida state legislators have an overly broad interpretation of that privilege. They are acting as if it is their privilege to hide their legislative intent.
 
2013-09-17 10:05:48 AM
Redistricting should be determined by a team of mathematicians. Districts should have the smallest borders possible while keeping equal numbers of citizens in each. No changing it to support your party, no changing it to promote minority legislators, no changing it because you wanted a dragon shaped district.
 
2013-09-17 10:13:50 AM

To The Escape Zeppelin!: Redistricting should be determined by a team of mathematicians. Districts should have the smallest borders possible while keeping equal numbers of citizens in each. No changing it to support your party, no changing it to promote minority legislators, no changing it because you wanted a dragon shaped district.


That's a deal breaker for me. I was with you up til that line.
 
2013-09-17 10:23:36 AM

Mercutio74: To The Escape Zeppelin!: Redistricting should be determined by a team of mathematicians. Districts should have the smallest borders possible while keeping equal numbers of citizens in each. No changing it to support your party, no changing it to promote minority legislators, no changing it because you wanted a dragon shaped district.

That's a deal breaker for me. I was with you up til that line.


anti-dragite
 
2013-09-17 10:36:24 AM
bi-partisan committee for the win
 
2013-09-17 10:37:01 AM

ikanreed: Mercutio74: ikanreed: Proportional party voting or multi-vote instant run-off please.  Gerrymandering is a symptom.

Unfortunately it's also a symptom of a broken, corrupt system that would resist the adoption of proportional party voting or instant run off.  I think the court challenge has to be the first step, you can't skip it and go right to a fair, sensible system.

No, due to America's perception of the Constitution as a literally sacred document, changing basic broken things that are boring will never happen.

//I honestly think we'd manage to do it without any republicans.


Gerrymandering (named after the 1811 Governor of Massachusetts, a Democrat) has been going on for decades.  Somehow it's only now a problem.
 
2013-09-17 10:41:35 AM

macadamnut:


I thought we were an autonomous collective
 
2013-09-17 10:43:37 AM
Redistricting and Gerrymandering are the only way Republicans can win elections anymore.
That's a fact, too.
 
2013-09-17 10:46:59 AM

Cataholic: Gerrymandering (named after the 1811 Governor of Massachusetts, a Democrat) has been going on for decades. Somehow it's only now a problem.


The tea party has exacerbated it.  It's one thing if you gerrymander a district and end up with a bunch of rank and file members of either party in congress.  It's another if you gerrymander a district and send dangerous nutjobs to congress.

Also, I think the fact that so many different states are involved with gerrymandering, and it's predominantly one-sided, puts the phenomenon at a historically out-of-whack level if you look at the raw vote numbers from the last house election vs. the amount of elected representatives from each party.
 
2013-09-17 10:48:09 AM

TrollingForColumbine: Mercutio74: To The Escape Zeppelin!: Redistricting should be determined by a team of mathematicians. Districts should have the smallest borders possible while keeping equal numbers of citizens in each. No changing it to support your party, no changing it to promote minority legislators, no changing it because you wanted a dragon shaped district.

That's a deal breaker for me. I was with you up til that line.

anti-dragite


I take it back. All the districts should be shaped like animals. "I recognize the representative from the leaping tiger district."
 
2013-09-17 10:54:15 AM

Cataholic: ikanreed: Mercutio74: ikanreed: Proportional party voting or multi-vote instant run-off please.  Gerrymandering is a symptom.

Unfortunately it's also a symptom of a broken, corrupt system that would resist the adoption of proportional party voting or instant run off.  I think the court challenge has to be the first step, you can't skip it and go right to a fair, sensible system.

No, due to America's perception of the Constitution as a literally sacred document, changing basic broken things that are boring will never happen.

//I honestly think we'd manage to do it without any republicans.

Gerrymandering (named after the 1811 Governor of Massachusetts, a Democrat) has been going on for decades.  Somehow it's only now a problem.


That's sure something I said, and entirely reflects my opinion.  Otherwise you'd be terribly disingenuous and a bad person.  I'd rather have proportional voting with more conservatives getting elected who at least accurately represented their constituencies, than continue to current model.
 
2013-09-17 11:16:57 AM

To The Escape Zeppelin!: Redistricting should be determined by a team of mathematicians. Districts should have the smallest borders possible while keeping equal numbers of citizens in each. No changing it to support your party, no changing it to promote minority legislators, no changing it because you wanted a dragon shaped district.


Just to play devil's advocate here...

Believe it or not, I could easily see how this could make things worse.  If districts are set completely blind, you may end up with a House made up disproportionately of members of the majority party, rather than a true representation of the people.  In theory, if 55% of the country votes for Democrats, then 55% of the House should be Democrats.  In your example, that percentage could easily top 75%.  In effect you're taking an aspect of the biggest problem of the Electoral College and applying it to the House.

So while gerrymandering for political gain is clearly bad, having oddly-shaped districts in order to assure a proper representation of the voting public is not automatically bad.
 
2013-09-17 12:18:30 PM

wxboy: To The Escape Zeppelin!: Redistricting should be determined by a team of mathematicians. Districts should have the smallest borders possible while keeping equal numbers of citizens in each. No changing it to support your party, no changing it to promote minority legislators, no changing it because you wanted a dragon shaped district.

Just to play devil's advocate here...

Believe it or not, I could easily see how this could make things worse.  If districts are set completely blind, you may end up with a House made up disproportionately of members of the majority party, rather than a true representation of the people.  In theory, if 55% of the country votes for Democrats, then 55% of the House should be Democrats.  In your example, that percentage could easily top 75%.  In effect you're taking an aspect of the biggest problem of the Electoral College and applying it to the House.

So while gerrymandering for political gain is clearly bad, having oddly-shaped districts in order to assure a proper representation of the voting public is not automatically bad.


The majority party as it exists today would cease to exist as each rep would be forced into actually doing what their constituents want rather than whatever Bloomburg or Kochs payed them to say.
 
2013-09-17 12:27:27 PM
"Hanging Chad" would be a good name for a Rock band, or FARK handle.

/something tells me it's been done...
 
2013-09-17 12:41:18 PM

ShadowKamui: The majority party as it exists today would cease to exist as each rep would be forced into actually doing what their constituents want rather than whatever Bloomburg or Kochs payed them to say.


Your optimism is admirable.
 
2013-09-18 01:54:18 AM

HotIgneous Intruder: Redistricting and Gerrymandering are the only way Republicans can win elections anymore.
That's a fact, too.


Have you been to the south, midwest, or rural west lately? There are still plenty of lower class to upper-middle class people willing to vote against their own interests in these areas.
 
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