Congress, OH

Gerrymandering Creates Imbalance of Power in Congress

Liz Fe Lifestyle

Every 10 years each state redraws its political lines and the process itself takes months, but the results that come from this help show the balance of power in Congress for at least a decade. Now the scary thing about this is that gerrymandering has increased as States redraw these maps. Gerrymandering itself is to manipulate the boundaries so that it favors one party or another. In this particular instance, politicians are drawing district lines to flip opposing voters among several districts and place them and a single one to limit competition elsewhere. So this would mean 1 District or county that votes primarily Democrat with a few Republicans will get split in half so that the Democratic voters are all placed into one district line making that a point for Democrats. The problem that can derive from this is communities that are led two elections that reward candidates who appeal to the far-left or far-right making compromise difficult and Congress. No party is scotch free from gerrymandering though as of right now Republicans have more opportunities. The GOP has hold of the line-drawing process in States representing 187 House Seats compared with 75 for Democrats. The other states use either independent commissions or have split government control and if they don't have that then they only have one congressional seat.

Individuals are coming out of the woodwork calling for more states to use redistricting commissions and push for democratic election bills to stall in the Senate that would mandate them Nationwide. It has been brought up though that some Democratic-controlled states such as Virginia and Colorado that recently adopted commissions are giving up their ability to counteract Republicans. but as stated again gerrymandering comes from both sides and Democrats have been shown more than willing to gerrymander when they can. For instance, after a power-sharing agreement with Republicans in Oregon without a standstill Democrats came in very fast and read through the state's Congressional map so all but one of its six districts leaned in their favor. And in the state of Illinois, it was brought with widespread criticism that Democrats could net 3 seats out of a map. The next state on the Democrats list is Maryland as they consider a proposal that would make it easier for them to out the only Republican Congressman in the state.

The court also ruled that partisan gerrymandering couldn't be overturned by federal courts. showing us that the way this runs illegally has changed so much since 2010 making it that much harder to challenge those who are gerrymandering.

States such as Arkansas, Indiana, and Alabama all maintain a republican advantage. Of the combined 17 US House Seats from those states only three are held by democrats And as of right now that does not seem like it's going to change.

Gerrymandering as stated above is not always checked by courts but they are limited by demographics. For example, in the state of Texas, the US Census Bureau found that the state grew so much that it earned the right to have new House Seats. Now the gop-controlled legislature drew a map that didn't create any new districts that would be dominated by the specific voters there for the Republicans to maintain the advantages in Texas. as of right now civil rights groups have sued to block this.

In North Carolina this is a whole different story, Republicans there have two vastly different approaches. The courts found out that Republican lawmakers packed too many black voters into only two congressional districts. that then was ruled that they illegally manipulated the Lions for their own partisan gain. Now the new North Carolina map has added the 14th District to the state due to its population growth. Yet this new map already faces a lawsuit because it helps jeopardize a seat held by a black congressman.

Overall both left and right-wing individuals are trying to play a game so that they can have the outcome that they so desperately want. This shouldn't come as a surprise for us at all. but we should be able to speak out when we see things that don't particularly make sense or seem legal. So with the issue in Texas, civil rights groups should be speaking up for those minority groups because everyone deserves a voice. citizens unfortunately just do not have really any say and how these lines are drawn but we can speak out against them and hopefully, that will be enough.

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Columbus, OH

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