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(Think Progress)   Coul dwe besa ying goodb yeto gerryma nderedd istricts?   ( thinkprogress.org) divider line
    More: Cool, Supreme Court of the United States, two-party statewide vote, statewide vote share, maps, partisan gerrymanders, John G. Roberts, court, Harvard Law School  
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2476 clicks; posted to Politics » on 03 Oct 2017 at 10:13 PM (2 weeks ago)   |   Favorite    |   share:  Share on Twitter share via Email Share on Facebook   more»



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2017-10-03 04:21:14 PM  
The conservative flank of the Court's defense of the map can be summarized in four words: "John Roberts hates math."

Gerrymandering is math. It sounds like John Roberts hates math that doesn't help conservatives.

And by the way, there are standards that don't involve much math, like "every new redistricting must have a shorter total boundary length than the previous one".

Liberal Justices Breyer, Ruth Bader Ginsburg and Elena Kagan spent much of the argument trying to construct a standard that would win Kennedy's vote.
These are smart people, and I'm curious as to what they might come up with, they shouldn't be trying to construct a standard on the fly. Why not pick one of the many standards (from fairly weak to very strong) that have been constructed?

computers and data analysis have grown so sophisticated that gerrymanders are only going to get more and more effective in entrenching one-party rule
Sadly true. I hope they're able to slow this down.
 
2017-10-03 04:38:12 PM  
Damn. Halfway through that headline, I thought it was Gungan-speak.
 
2017-10-03 04:52:43 PM  

dv-ous: Damn. Halfway through that headline, I thought it was Gungan-speak.


Jury-Jury Binks?
 
2017-10-03 05:36:16 PM  
 
2017-10-03 05:43:33 PM  

Dusk-You-n-Me: Link


Thanks.
 
2017-10-03 05:44:01 PM  
Great headline, subby.
 
2017-10-03 06:08:57 PM  

dv-ous: Damn. Halfway through that headline, I thought it was Gungan-speak.


So it wasn't just me.

I like it when it takes a minute to get the joke. Nice, subby.
 
2017-10-03 06:14:43 PM  

Dusk-You-n-Me: Link


That was a great read.
 
2017-10-03 06:17:47 PM  
Another +1 for the headline.
 
2017-10-03 06:25:58 PM  
N       o  .
 
2017-10-03 06:27:32 PM  

draypresct: And by the way, there are standards that don't involve much math, like "every new redistricting must have a shorter total boundary length than the previous one".


I mean, that's pretty math-y, but it also doesn't accomplish representative districts,because voting representation is more than just geography. If you have, say, a minority demographic- 25% of the total population, and you're drawing 4 districts, if you draw those districts only by geography and not demographics, you could easily end up in a situation where your minority demographic controls 0% of the seats in the legislature, whereas if you perhaps draw some awkward looking boundaries, you can give a demographically distinct population its own district- meaning that they'll control 25% of the total seats.

Which is why justices are questioning what standard could be used, because "fair" is hard to define in this case.
 
2017-10-03 06:34:33 PM  
le tsh ope
 
2017-10-03 06:35:38 PM  
Counter-point

Ms. Murphy said that gerrymandering "produces values in terms of accountability that are valuable so that the people understand who isn't and who is in power."

I've read that a half dozen times and subby's headline still makes more sense.
 
2017-10-03 06:55:03 PM  
Roberts, however, recoiled at the very idea that courts would play around with something so vulgar as maps and social science. In an especially candid moment, he told Smith that his primary concern is that, should Smith prevail, multiple partisan gerrymandering cases will be brought to the Court in the future, and the justices will have to explain why they side with a particular party in each case.

Or, you know, you could just write a blanket opinion that shuts down gerrymandering for good and precludes them by de facto requiring independent, non-partisan commissions to decide districts.  I mean, it's clearly an intractable problem that otherwise only courts can decide at this point anyway.
 
2017-10-03 07:16:11 PM  
I'll wait until there's an actual ruling on it before I even think about celebrating.
 
2017-10-03 07:53:36 PM  

fusillade762: Ms. Murphy said that gerrymandering "produces values in terms of accountability that are valuable so that the people understand who isn't and who is in power."


Is she trying to say that it's important because the losers know who's boss, and that'll show 'em? Is that really what I'm reading?
 
2017-10-03 08:00:20 PM  
Damn headline rule
 
2017-10-03 08:21:26 PM  
I can't even hope for something so obviously good at this point
 
2017-10-03 08:28:45 PM  
I have two pillars of necessary American political reform: (1) gerrymandering and (2) campaign finance.  We fix those two, and suddenly political doors we previously thought closed forever suddenly become unlocked (or at least we're told where the keys are).
 
2017-10-03 08:32:32 PM  

t3knomanser: Is she trying to say that it's important because the losers know who's boss


Angela?  It was Angela.  Or Mona?
 
2017-10-03 09:17:18 PM  

Trivia Jockey: I have two pillars of necessary American political reform: (1) gerrymandering and (2) campaign finance.  We fix those two, and suddenly political doors we previously thought closed forever suddenly become unlocked (or at least we're told where the keys are).


Seriously.. The gerrymandering thing is right up there with "health care" and "gun control" that the rest of the non American world pretty much just points and laughs at. Campaign finance is a little more broadly an issue. Canada tries to limit the abuse by keeping elections to (usually) about 6 weeks. Harper went way long and Trudeau won a majority from third place.  Having Reps have to run every two years, and everyone else run a campaign for two every four or six is so not helping the funding abuses.
 
2017-10-03 10:16:50 PM  
John Oliver explains gerrymandering:

Gerrymandering: Last Week Tonight with John Oliver (HBO)
Youtube A-4dIImaodQ
 
2017-10-03 10:17:53 PM  
Not counting chickens. I don't trust them.
 
2017-10-03 10:20:13 PM  

koder: Roberts, however, recoiled at the very idea that courts would play around with something so vulgar as maps and social science. In an especially candid moment, he told Smith that his primary concern is that, should Smith prevail, multiple partisan gerrymandering cases will be brought to the Court in the future, and the justices will have to explain why they side with a particular party in each case.

Or, you know, you could just write a blanket opinion that shuts down gerrymandering for good and precludes them by de facto requiring independent, non-partisan commissions to decide districts.  I mean, it's clearly an intractable problem that otherwise only courts can decide at this point anyway.


The court will never, ever adopt a decision that enforces a specific method of drawing districts in each state.
 
2017-10-03 10:22:55 PM  

Coul

dwe


                                                                            ​besa                    ying

                                                                      ​goodb


yeto


                                                                                                                      gerryma


                      nderedd

                                                                                                                                       istricts?

        M                                                                     ​ayb                                                                  e.
 
2017-10-03 10:23:16 PM  
If Kennedy dies or retires during Trump's presidency, this country is farked for decades.
 
2017-10-03 10:23:33 PM  
img.fark.net

Here's HOpinG we setTLE this.

/Saw what you did there, subby.
 
2017-10-03 10:23:49 PM  
Why not totally do away with districts entirely? Award seats proportionally to parties based on votes.

 If a region feels the party they voted for doesn't appoint a representative that has their interests in mind, they form a new party. ...and see if they can't get their own rep...

Other than parties in power would never allow it, I'm sure there is a fatal flaw I'm not thinking of....but it's late and I'm tired
 
2017-10-03 10:24:46 PM  

Trivia Jockey: I have two pillars of necessary American political reform: (1) gerrymandering and (2) campaign finance.  We fix those two, and suddenly political doors we previously thought closed forever suddenly become unlocked (or at least we're told where the keys are).


Nothing to add. Just think this needs to be said more.
 
2017-10-03 10:24:48 PM  

The Dog Ate My Homework: If Kennedy dies or retires during Trump's presidency, this country is farked for decades.


Or Ginsburg, or Breyer. All of which was obvious years ago.
 
2017-10-03 10:28:09 PM  

Naido: I can't even hope for something so obviously good at this point


If it did happen against their gerrymander, Republicans would flip the fark out. Not just in Wisconsin, but everywhere, and flip out crazy on AM radio and you wouldn't be able to imagine Alex Jones.

Then again, it probably won't happen.

Let's not forget though, all gerrymanders end up being bad. So let's not replace one with another.
 
2017-10-03 10:29:25 PM  
Man, look how hard they must have worked to get all the lines in Wyoming's congressional district so nice and straight.  Something fishy going on there.
img.fark.net
 
2017-10-03 10:29:50 PM  
So Roberts is afraid the Court will appear partisan if it acts to mitigate partisanship in drawing districts.
 
2017-10-03 10:32:07 PM  

The Dog Ate My Homework: If Kennedy dies or retires during Trump's presidency, this country is farked for decades.


Nah.. the left might be, but the country will do great.
 
2017-10-03 10:36:08 PM  

OlderGuy: The Dog Ate My Homework: If Kennedy dies or retires during Trump's presidency, this country is farked for decades.

Nah.. the left might be, but the country will do great.


That's the spirit of unity we need!
*eyeroll*
 
2017-10-03 10:38:36 PM  

OlderGuy: The Dog Ate My Homework: If Kennedy dies or retires during Trump's presidency, this country is farked for decades.

Nah.. the left might be, but the country will do great.


/Current experience to the contrary. Right has House, Senate, WH, and the stolen balance of the SC and still can't do shait...
 
2017-10-03 10:42:59 PM  

Trivia Jockey: I have two pillars of necessary American political reform: (1) gerrymandering and (2) campaign finance.  We fix those two, and suddenly political doors we previously thought closed forever suddenly become unlocked (or at least we're told where the keys are).


Except we need those who explicitly benefit most from those two things to fix it for us.
 
2017-10-03 10:45:06 PM  

TofuTheAlmighty: So Roberts is afraid the Court will appear partisan if it acts to mitigate partisanship in drawing districts.


Any Court ruling which doesn't explicitly help conservatives and/or harm liberals is by definition a partisan ruling, even if the case is inherently non-partisan in nature.

Plessy v Ferguson was NOT a partisan ruling. Brown v Board Of Ed. was a partisan ruling. Obergefell v Hodges was a partisan ruling.

The Obamacare case was a partisan ruling, but the Hobby Lobby case was NOT a partisan ruling.


Notice the pattern? Can you figure out which cases were shining examples of the impartial nature of the independent judiciary and which cases are examples of activist judges legislating from the bench?
 
2017-10-03 10:56:43 PM  
I did not submit this with a better headline.
 
2017-10-03 10:59:06 PM  
 
2017-10-03 11:44:40 PM  

t3knomanser: draypresct: And by the way, there are standards that don't involve much math, like "every new redistricting must have a shorter total boundary length than the previous one".

I mean, that's pretty math-y, but it also doesn't accomplish representative districts,because voting representation is more than just geography. If you have, say, a minority demographic- 25% of the total population, and you're drawing 4 districts, if you draw those districts only by geography and not demographics, you could easily end up in a situation where your minority demographic controls 0% of the seats in the legislature, whereas if you perhaps draw some awkward looking boundaries, you can give a demographically distinct population its own district- meaning that they'll control 25% of the total seats.

Which is why justices are questioning what standard could be used, because "fair" is hard to define in this case.


Drawing districts to isolate minorities in the name of giving them a solid win is what allowed Republicans to gerrymander both the house and state legislatures to the absurd degree that they managed to do such in 2010.
 
2017-10-03 11:47:51 PM  
Eh. As long as we still have (a) politically assortative relocation (one party for people in cities, one for people in suburbs and the numerically insignificant rural areas) and (b) single-seat districts, preventing gerrymandering is just fiddling while the capital burns.

Proportional representation or bust.
 
2017-10-03 11:49:17 PM  
Gawd I hope so.
Gerrymandering is one of the biggest reasons for the absurdly lopsided House representation and a huge impediment to the health of our democracy in general. I'm proud to say that California has gotten rid of Gerrymandering already, but some of those GOP strongholds will never get on board if we don't make them stop rigging their elections.
 
2017-10-03 11:50:40 PM  

Murkanen: t3knomanser: draypresct: And by the way, there are standards that don't involve much math, like "every new redistricting must have a shorter total boundary length than the previous one".

I mean, that's pretty math-y, but it also doesn't accomplish representative districts,because voting representation is more than just geography. If you have, say, a minority demographic- 25% of the total population, and you're drawing 4 districts, if you draw those districts only by geography and not demographics, you could easily end up in a situation where your minority demographic controls 0% of the seats in the legislature, whereas if you perhaps draw some awkward looking boundaries, you can give a demographically distinct population its own district- meaning that they'll control 25% of the total seats.

Which is why justices are questioning what standard could be used, because "fair" is hard to define in this case.

Drawing districts to isolate minorities in the name of giving them a solid win is what allowed Republicans to gerrymander both the house and state legislatures to the absurd degree that they managed to do such in 2010.


I've often wondered, as an ethnic minority, that the drive to give us actual numeric representation was the Monkey's Paw that allowed Republicans to claim the Legislature in perpetuity because then they can dilute Democratic core votes into oblivion by isolating the most hardcore partisans (ethnic minorities outside of a few) into a couple of districts, and then dilute white liberals and moderates to nothingness.
 
2017-10-03 11:56:58 PM  

monkeypapa: Notorious RBG is in the house!!


My god Gorsuch sounds like a a**hole.
And thank goodness for RBG; I'm the furthest thing from a student of law, and even I did an "ooooh BURN!" at that one.
 
2017-10-04 12:11:30 AM  

Gawdzila: My god Gorsuch sounds like a a**hole.


If it walks like a duck and quacks like a duck, it's an asshole.
 
2017-10-04 12:25:43 AM  
Surely the GOP will have no problem giving up power in order to keep things fair and balanced.

/cold day in farking hell.
 
2017-10-04 12:52:02 AM  
Excuse me, subby?
img.fark.net
 
2017-10-04 01:09:37 AM  
If they ever end gerrymandering, they will do it in a way that makes the system even MORE rigged in favor of the republicans.
 
2017-10-04 01:41:32 AM  
Stop posting hope spots. A GOP Billionare President puts out a tax plan promising to raise taxes on the middle and lower classes while giving himself a tax cut, and he's a hero for for the 'working class'. Up is down, right is wrong, words don't mean anything anymore, and stop being hopeful.

/liberal
//tired of losing
///Seriously, if you just hate me so much you'd take yourself down, I'll leave
 
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