Friday, August 24, 2007

In Response to This Morning's Anonymous Commenter and Our Other Not-So-Constant Readers

An anonymous visitor left a comment this morning on a post I wrote last week about the opportunity for redistricting reform that New York has in the few years before the next census.

Anonymous writes, in part:
A so-called bipartisan computer redistricting model will magically retain McHugh and Walsh upstate seats by generating weirdly vast gerrymandered districts with absolutely no connection to the electorate. The reason will be to ensure the disenfranchisement of downstate citizens, i.e., to dilute Hispanic votes and the potential for more Hispanic political clout in NY.
First off, thanks for participating in the conversation, Anonymous! In response, I would refer you to our further posts on the topic of redistricting. Nowhere will you find us advocating for a blind, computer-driven model of redistricting. We agree that ignoring demographic factors will lead to a map that in no way serves the needs of New Yorkers.

We are seeking reforms that will take power out of the hands of self-interested politicians and break the cycle of bipartisan gerrymanders that have plagued us for so long. District lines should be drawn to encourage competition, but as Anonymous points out, they should also be sensitive to the needs of the citizens that they encompass. Where at all possible, district lines should avoid splitting up communities of interest, whether they are official communities, such as towns and cities, or they are less defined racial and ethnic communities.

We are open to any ideas that would serve these purposes and would love to hear your further thoughts on the topic!

1 comment:

people for the ethical treatment of politicians said...

In a city of 8,000,000 million, and five counties,
you would figure that the majority of districts would be in one county. The opposite is true, with over half of the districts crossing county lines.

lets all repeat

Protect the incumbent
Protect the incumbent
Protect the incumbent
Protect the incumbent
Protect the incumbent
Protect the incumbent
Protect the incumbent
Protect the incumbent
Protect the incumbent
Protect the incumbent
Protect the incumbent
Protect the incumbent
Protect the incumbent
Protect the incumbent