Skip to main content

View Diary: House GOP not returning to D.C. (182 comments)

Comment Preferences

  •  as much as i agree it is difficult... (3+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:
    lovelyivy, rbird, RUNDOWN

    really, what is the alternative?  Maps need to be drawn, and redrawn after each census, because congressional districts change.  If not a political party redistricting it, what other process can be relied upon?  Make-believe "non-partisan" commissions serve to insulate the partisanship, at least the people in office are in theory accountable for their vote-stealing.

    When was that made an issue, ever?

    At least the electorate has a chance every 10 years to solve their own voting issues.  The problem is that the electorate in swing states rarely take their civil duties all that seriously, permitting an activist minority faction to develop these leads....

    •  We need a law that total seats are within a ~10% (1+ / 0-)
      Recommended by:
      DSPS owl

      error of the popular vote of a State. Something like this. Just to name a number. I don't know, but we have to think about this.

      See, a court could come up with a map that draws out many more competitive districts that in sum, based on the registered party affiliation, would predict a seat distribution in agreement with a percentage that is within 10% of the popular vote for the entire state. Democracy cannot allow a huge discrepancy between a popular vote and the actual seat distribution. Importantly, more competitive districts would lead to the election of more centrist candidates. The influence of extremists like the teaparty would be diminished. Our democracy would win, the satisfaction of Americans with Congress would increase. What we have now is a complete disaster for a democracy.

    •  Well, (3+ / 0-)
      Recommended by:
      sethtriggs, Egg, tari

      there are faux "nonpartisan" processes like the one in New Jersey, but there are actual, effective nonpartisan redistricting commissions that consistently produce fair districts independently of partisan pressure, like in Iowa and Washington.  Both California and Arizona seemed to meet this standard this time around, the latter despite a ridiculous temper tantrum by the state GOP including an attempt to impeach one of the commissioners.

      Also, states are free to run all of their seats at large and voters choose as many candidates as there are seats.  The problems there are (1) this can result in the party winning statewide sweeping all of the seats and (2) you lose the concept of a local representative familiar with local concerns.  For example, in Illinois, nearly all the Reps would end up coming from Chicago.

      I'm not sure whether an at-large system where each party submits a slate, you have one vote for a slate, and the seats are awarded by party in proportion to the total vote would be Constitutional, but that seems to be what you're after.  That would also be a boon to minor parties, who could score a seat or two in large states under such a system.

      Nate Silver is to Joe Scarborough as Billy Beane is to Grady Fuson

      by Superribbie on Wed Dec 26, 2012 at 11:03:38 AM PST

      [ Parent ]

    •  There are computer programs that can draw (3+ / 0-)
      Recommended by:
      Just Bob, DSPS owl, tari

      district lines, using census data.  It would be straightforward to write one optimized for compact districts.  Years (decades) ago I read an article in Scientific American that I think touted 'population density moment of interia' which I think would do that.  Or using the same kind of algorithm that groups web sites by how often they link to each other, it ought to be possible to group people by where they commute, where they do business, or other criteria.

      States ought to be required to pick some such system years before the census for which they'd be applied.  That way it would be very difficult to pick an algorithm that gives either party an advantage.  We'd probably end up with fewer of the 'safe' districts that help Representatives at the political extremes stay in office for decades.

      We're all pretty strange one way or another; some of us just hide it better. "Normal" is a dryer setting.

      by david78209 on Wed Dec 26, 2012 at 12:28:33 PM PST

      [ Parent ]

Subscribe or Donate to support Daily Kos.

Click here for the mobile view of the site