Deep Dive: Is there “Fair” Redistricting?

Deep Dive: Is There “Fair” Redistricting?

Gerrymandering is often blamed for problems that are really inherent in the use of single-winner districts, such as a lack of competition or outcomes that unfairly favor one political party. Bipartisan redistricting commissions, independent redistricting commissions, and citizen redistricting commission are often seen as the solution to gerrymandered districts because they take district maps out of partisan (or even political) hands. There are good reasons to take power away from partisans in drawing district, but analyses by FairVote and leading scholars show that no matter how a state redistricts, single-winner districts tend to lead to outcomes controlled by the partisans that maintain the power of one party in a district. Despite the frequent association of gerrymandering with bizarrely shaped districts and poor aesthetics, both merely provide circumstantial evidence of legislative wrongdoing. Drawing oddly-shaped districts

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Drawing Districts

Despite the frequent association of gerrymandering with bizarrely shaped districts and poor aesthetics, both merely provide circumstantial evidence of legislative wrongdoing. Drawing oddly-shaped districts is neither a goal of gerrymandering nor is it necessary for a map to be gerrymandered. It is not difficult to draw district maps that unfairly favor one political faction or entrench incumbents using attractively compact districts. Helpful resources include:

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