I hate partisan gerrymandering. I hate it when the Dems do it. I hate it when the Republicans do it. I understood it when the Republicans took over under the Democrat map, solidified their gains under a judge drawn map, and then wanted to firm things up. The Dems had done it all along, but had the advantage of being able to do it at the census turn.
Republicans in the state Senate on Thursday pushed through a change to their chamber’s political map that would divide Athens – a Democratic stronghold – into two districts.
The plan’s sponsor called it an effort to honor a five-year-old request from commissioners in rural Madison County. But Democrats dubbed it an election-year ploy designed to hurt the chances of a House Democrat who is seeking the seat and help the brother-in-law of a Republican senator.
At some point you just have to stop redrawing the maps. Otherwise we’ll get to the point where the maps are redrawn after every election to shore up support in key districts and punish those who beat incumbents.
Likewise, I do not think there is a role for the state supreme court. This is a federal judicial issue because of the Voting Rights Act, but if the Georgia Supreme Court were to rule that mid season gerrymandering was unconstitutional, they’d prove themselves to be a partisan outfit, but there the only basis would be too sketchy to pass the smell test.
This puts everyone in a difficult situation and it is best to leave well enough alone. Take it up in 2011 after the next census.
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