? asked in Politics & GovernmentElections · 9 years ago

Gerrymandering and Re-election?

If Gerrymandering does happen, why are legislators still worried about being re-elected. If Gerrymandering almost guarantees a seat, then how come our legislators still have trouble compromising. I mean, if they're sure to win a seat, then they shouldn't worry about saying yes to something and upsettingg their constituents, thus hurting their chances for re-election, right?

I appreciate any answers, I'm not asPoliticallyy Fluent as most of the people here. I'm just curious.

Update:

But then it's just a cycle of Re-apportioning and getting re-elected. Shouldn't this be a sign that we should increase the length of a term, to allow for less campaigning and more governing?

2 Answers

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  • Map
    Lv 6
    9 years ago
    Favorite Answer

    The number one job of a political party is to get their people elected to public office.

    To do that you have do everything in your power to get your people.

    If you have elected your people to the right state office then your people are in charge of drawing districts lines in the state.

    Gerrymandering is a term for drawing district lines to pick up the most people in your party so that your people will be elected. Lets say that there are a number of Republicans living on streets A & B and those Republicans might tip the first district to the Republicans. Because we are the Democrats we do not want that to happen. So we, because we are in charge of redistricting, we are not going risk letting this first district going Republican. There are lots of Republicans in the district two and we can do nothing about that so we are going to draw the line to put the Republicans living on streets A & B in the district two. The problem is that Streets A & B do not touch District Two. No matter we will draw the line to get them in District Two anyway.

    So yes they are living in a so called "safe district" but they men and women are still up for re election ever two years, every four years or every six years depending on their office and they still have to worry about how the voters will think and vote.

    Now what I would like you to do, and it relates to this question is go to:

    http://www.270towin.com/

    It is a political map of every election from George Washington to our incumbent President and even a map for 2012. If you look at the map when they change to red and blue you will see the map change from almost all red to almost all blue. That will show you that the voters can and do change their minds.

    Hope this helps. And PS Welcome to the wonderful world of Politics. It can be fun and it can be terrifying at times. But it makes life interesting.

    Well if we increase the length of a term then that would mean that the Constitution would have to be changed. The Senators have a six year term. Do you really hear from your Senators until almost the time of the election? If the Representatives had more than 2 year term do you think we would hear from them? The reason way the founders set the term of 2 years was to keep the Representatives in touch with the people.

    Map

  • 9 years ago

    Under the U.S. Constitution, the state gets members in the House based off of population (in which the Hunnington-Hill method is the current standard on what states get in apportioning seats). However, the states have to keep districts relatively equal in population, and gerrymandering is a practice that attempts to establish a political advantage for a particular party or group by manipulating geographic boundaries to create partisan, incumbent-protected districts. This can be used to achieve desired election results with a political party or it could be done to help/hinder a certain demographic of the population based usually on politics, race, main language spoken at home, religion or class (with class referring to how much money is made). Gerrymandering for the purpose of reducing the political influence of a racial or ethnic minority group is illegal under the Civil Rights Act of 1965. Also, the Supreme Court ruled in Shawn v. Reno (1993) and Miller v. Johnson (1995), that majority-minority districts also known as affirmative gerrymandering is unconstitutional. Therefore, one cannot legally gerrymander based on racial or ethnic groups power (either to hinder or strengthen), and it is immoral to gerrymander in general.

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