Wednesday, July 26, 2006

Election Reform Part 3

Today I am going to talk about gerrymandering. Gerrymandering is the art of drawing a circle around as many of your friends as possible on a map then calling that a district. In Indiana, one can always count on the legislature to draw up congressional and legislative districts so that they favor the Republicans. I suspect that the Democrats would consider doing the same thing if they were in power. But both parties resent it when the other does it, and I think both sides would happily give it up if they thought that the other would give it up as well.

In politics, however, you can't count on a gentleman's agreement. Sometimes you really do need a new law to keep things fair. If the Democrats take back the legislature, Republicans are going to wish they passed this law that I am proposing.

The boundaries for congressional and legislative districts should be drawn using the following guidelines:
1. The priority when drawing a district should be to include voters who have geography in common, not ideology.
2. The boundaries of each district must consist of no more than 5 lines running north to south and five lines running east to west.
3. Shorelines of natural bodies of water, county lines, state boundaries and city limits are acceptable district boundaries and do not count towards the totals defined above.

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