Judge: Partisan Gerrymandering "A Cancer on Our Democracy"
"A cancer on our democracy."
Those are the words U.S. District Judge James K. Bredar used to describe the two-party gerrymandering scheme going on in Maryland and across the country.
A US district court sided with GOP voters Friday, describing Maryland's redistricting process as "nefarious activity." They found sufficient evidence that the Democratic majority drew district boundaries to make it easier to knock out a GOP incumbent and take all, but one congressional seat.
It is the second time in the past year a panel of federal judges has expressed an opinion condemning the political motivations behind electoral mapmaking.
The first case, Whitford v. Gill out of Wisconsin, is currently before the Supreme Court. A lower court ruled that state legislative boundaries were so partisan that they violated the voting rights of voters outside the Republican Party and thus were unconstitutional.
However, in this case the judges were divided on whether or not the legislature should have to redraw one or more of Maryland's congressional districts. There is no indication when an official ruling might be handed down.
RELATED ARTICLE: Efficiency Gap: The Greatest Weapon to Fight Partisan Gerrymandering
Gerrymandering is often portrayed in the media as solely a Republican problem, yet when one looks at states like Illinois and Maryland it is important to remember that Democrats are just as guilty. Partisan gerrymandering is a two-party scheme to suppress the voice of those outside the party in power.
Thank you Hedrick Smith at Reclaim The American Dream for this information. Check out his gerrymandering progress report here.
Photo Credit: Jon Bilous / shutterstock.com
About the Author
Shawn M Griffiths
Shawn is the Election Reform Editor for IVN.us. He studied history and philosophy at the University of North Texas, and joined the IVN team in 2012. He has several years of experience covering the broad scope of political and election reform efforts across the country, and has an extensive knowledge of the movement at large. A native Texan, he now lives in San Diego, California.