Go check out examples of political jargon. ‘This is a government that blatantly indulged in open gerrymander, for example the re-allocation of defence force votes among surrounding marginal seats.’ ‘He said the Government's electoral reforms would create a gerrymander, where electoral boundaries are created to give one party an advantage.’ The law consolidated the Federalist Party vote in a few districts and thus gave disproportionate representation to Democratic-Republicans. Racial gerrymandering…, …suppression is racial or partisan gerrymandering (the drawing of electoral districts by state legislatures in such a way as to dilute the voting power of members of a certain racial group or political party), though it does not specifically prevent any person from voting or registering to vote. gerrymandering and the constitutional norm against government partisanship Instead the bureaucratic fat keeps growing, aggravated by an increasing trend toward congressional gerrymandering and the ever-growing number of party-list representatives, many of them with vague constituencies. By using ThoughtCo, you accept our, How the Votes Are Counted on Election Day, Why Puerto Rico Matters in the US Presidential Election, 15th Amendment Grants Voting Rights to Black American Men, Black Women Who Have Run for President of the United States, How the US Electoral College System Works, How Vacancies in the US Congress are Filled, All the Women Who Have Run for President of the US, to favor a political party or one particular candidate for elected office, according to the Brennan Center for Justice, based on the decennial census every 10 years, North Dakota (Legislative districts only), South Dakota (Legislative districts only), Pennsylvania (Legislative districts only). Elections may be nominally free, but governments engage in extensive gerrymandering, manipulation of voter registration and harassment of opposition parties. "A state may take race into account as one of several factors when drawing district lines—but without a compelling reason, race cannot be the 'predominant' reason for a district’s shape," according to the Brennan Center for Justice. In states where they controlled the process of drawing congressional district boundaries, they captured seven out of 10 seats with only 56 percent of the popular vote. The four states that employ independent commissions are: Advisory commissions: Four states use and advisory commission consisting of a mix of legislators and non-legislators to draw up congressional maps that are then presented to the legislature for a vote. The same was true for Democrats. Gerrymandering Gerrymandering; Gerrymandering Definition. Hakeem Jeffries is a classic example of political gerrymandering, what happened to him? Gerrymandering is the practice of dividing election districts to give special advantages to one group and usually to give one political party an electoral majority in a large number of districts while concentrating the opposition’s voting strength in the fewest districts possible. Omissions? He was running to represent his district and perceived to be a threat by the current district chair and effectively cut out of his district through gerrymandering preventing him from being able to represent that district. Gerrymandering -- drawing political boundaries to give your party a numeric advantage over an opposing party -- is a difficult process to explain. Gerrymandering is the act of drawing congressional, state legislative or other political boundaries to favor a political party or one particular candidate for elected office. "Gerrymandering is not hard," Sam Wang, the founder of Princeton University's Election Consortium, wrote in 2012. The purpose of gerrymandering is to grant one party power over another by creating districts that hold dense concentrations of voters who are favorable to their policies. Some redistricting commissions are expected to resist political influence and act independently from the parties and the elected officials in that state. [After Elbridge Gerry + (sala)mander (from the shape of an election district created while Gerry was governor of Massachusetts).] Gerrymandering is the act of redrawing the lines of a congressional district to give one political party a voting advantage over another. Gerrymandering is used to give the majority party the greatest number of districts that they can reasonably win and the minority party the fewest number of safe districts. [ ( jer-ee-man-duhr) ] To change the boundaries of legislative districts to favor one party over another. Let us know if you have suggestions to improve this article (requires login). Gerrymandering is the act of altering political boundaries in order to give an unfair advantage to one political party or group of people. Gerrymandering is the act of drawing congressional, state legislative or other political boundaries to favor a political party or one particular candidate for elected office. Where Did the Term “Gerrymander” Come From? Gerrymandering in the United States has been used to increase the power of a political party. He continued: The most concerted effort to redraw political boundaries to benefit a political party in modern history happened after the 2010 census. Charles Ledyard Norton, writing in the 1890 book Political Americanisms, blamed Gerry for signing into a law a bill in 1811 "readjusting the representative districts so as to favor the Democrats and weaken the Federalists, although the last-named party polled nearly two-thirds of the votes cast.". From the Cambridge English Corpus In contrast, if local boundaries are respected, levels of malapportionment increase, while gerrymandering becomes more difficult to accomplish. In Davis v. Bandemer (1986), however, a plurality of the Supreme Court held that political gerrymanders could be found unconstitutional (under the equal protection clause) if the resulting electoral system “is arranged in a manner that will consistently degrade a voter’s or a group of voters’ influence in the political process as a whole.” A majority of the Court also agreed that the instance of gerrymandering before it did not display any of the “identifying characteristics of a nonjusticiable political question” that had been laid out in Baker v. Carr, including, as the Baker Court had put it, “a lack of judicially discoverable and manageable standards for resolving it.” Although the majority in Bandemer could not agree on what standards should be used to adjudicate challenges to political gerrymanders, it refused to accept that none existed, declaring on that basis that “we decline to hold that such claims are never justiciable.”, In 2004, in Vieth v. Jubelirer, a plurality of the Court pointedly embraced what the Bandemer Court had declined to hold, on the grounds that “no judicially discernible and manageable standards for adjudicating political gerrymandering claims have emerged” since the Bandemer decision. A satirical cartoon by Elkanah Tisdale that appeared in the Boston Gazette graphically transformed the districts into a fabulous animal, “The Gerry-mander,” fixing the term in the popular imagination. Interested in finding out more uniquely political concepts? 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