If you still think partisan gerrymandering is not about race, you might want to redraw your perspective.
Of course it’s about race, now. It’s forced to be about race, due to two factors:
- The existence of the VRA, which in itself forces a racial gerrymander by requiring state governments to create districts that minorities can win, and….
- The fact that black Americans vote 90% for Democrats, with Latinos not far behind.
The combination of those two factors has, and will continue, to put a target on the back of white Democrats. If a state and its government lean GOP, and the state has a substantive minority population, then more and more (and eventually virtually ALL) of the seats the government must apportion to the opposition party will be taken by minorities.
In fact, if you look at the North Carolina gerrrymander dustup which you cite below, you find that the motivation that caused the state legislature to run afoul of VRA guidelines is that they tried to defend the seat NOT of a Republican, but of David Price, a long time white Democrat. Their error was carving out that district so it would both vote blue and for the white incumbent; had they drawn that district so it would have elected a black Democrat, there would have been no problem. But because they tried to give that seat to a long term incumbent, it caused distortions in two other districts, and the entire effort when to hell in a handbasket.
So, in my view, one must look at this issue from the proper perspective. The Republican state government drawing the map knows legal proportionate representation is required. If you’re Texas, for example, that means that 12% of my 36 seat delegation must be drawn to elect a black candidate (so, 4 seats) and forty percent of my delegation is going to be drawn to elect an Hispanic candidate (14 seats, basically).
Next task? Find as many minority Republicans as I can and draw districts for them. Will Hurd, Bill Flores. I’m now in VRA compliance with 18 minority seats, 2 GOP, 16 Dem.
What am I going to do with the remaining 18? I’m going to give them all to the GOP, of course, and make my delegation 20 GOP, 16 Dem. And err on the GOP side, if I err.
And that’s why Lloyd Doggett is a dead man walking after 2020. In the outgoing delegation, there were only three white Democrats: Beto O Rourke (not returning), Gene Green (who held a heavily Hispanic district for many terms and retired), and Lloyd Doggett.
Sorry, Lloyd. Go sell insurance.
Racial gerrymandering perpetuates racial inequality in America by taking away ethnic minorities’ right to vote fairly for candidates that will represent them. It is an unconstitutional practice that needs to be promptly addressed by the Supreme Court.
Racial gerrymandering is the law of the land. It’s codified in the VRA. Not calling it “gerrymandering” doesn’t change what it is.
Meaning that all these legislators have to do is present these majority-minority districts as compliant with the Voting Rights Act, even if their actual effect is detrimental to minority voters.
Hmmmm. So, what you’re arguing is that Gene Green’s majority (heavily) Hispanic district voted for him for years, even though that was detrimental to themselves?
Sounds like you think we need a law to prevent minorities from voting for white candidates. Really?
However, we must consider: what happens when the correlation between race and party is so high it becomes impossible to separate the two?
Well, you cannot separate the two. :-) This is the unintended consequence of the law. If you have a law that says that race must be considered when drawing districts, race is going to be considered when drawing districts. You can’t go back then and say “you have to consider race, but only in a particular way.”
As we can see, racial polarization in the United States has gotten to the point where a majority of white voters vote Republican, and minorities vote Democrat.
Nate Cohn of the Times noted that in the 2016 election, white voters had finally started to vote like an identity block. Expect this trend to continue, once you remove the polarizing figure from the White House.
The recent predominance of identity politics is due to white people’s belief that they are under attack and at risk of losing their superior status in society.
There is, of course, zero proof of this nonsense. The real issue here is that Democrats refuse to accept responsibility for the blowback of their own identity politics.
Voters are not stupid. They listen to the national leaders of the two parties, and they realize that for one of those two parties, the entirety of the political discussion is about identity groups. It’s relatively easy for a voter to determine or not if they are part of one of those identity groups or not, and figure out from there where their interests lie. It has zero to do with “losing superior status”.
Despite this, proving racial gerrymandering over partisan gerrymandering can be quite tricky, especially when they are one and the same.
Uh…..exactly. Which makes one wonder why you bothered to write this article.
In the end, the court determined that District #12 was, in fact, racially gerrymandered.
It’s probably worth mentioning what the result of all this was. North Carolina has 13 congressional seats. NC is 22% black. So, there should be (by the math) 2.86 seats held by African Americans. The NC legislature had drawn 3 Democrat seats, one held by David Price, the other two by African Americans.
In order to effectively tackle racial gerrymandering once and for all, the Supreme Court must stop asking themselves: “Was this redistricting plan motivated by race or party?” and start to consider a different approach to the question: “Will this redistricting plan ensure racial minorities are fairly represented, considering their backgrounds, needs and interest?”
Indeed. Which begs ANOTHER question, which is:
Where the hell did we get this idea that the interests of a particular race can only be represented by members of the same race?
Which in turn begs another question:
How long doe perpetuate this irresolveable nonsense, before we throw it all out and say “Hey, look, we’re all Americans.”
If you want racism to exist forever, codify it into law. Seems to be working.