News

  • Competition would improve representation

    December 16, 2016 • Posted In: • News

    Richmond Times-Dispatch Mark Hile Competition is a good thing. I support politicians who believe competition is a good thing. Unfortunately, many politicians who gerrymander their own districts believe that rules don’t apply to them. They draw their voting districts — picking their voters — in a way that carves up natural communities and drives out […]

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  • To optimize our democracy, bury the gerrymander

    December 11, 2016 • Posted In: • News

    The Salt Lake Tribune By Sheryl Allen and Cheryll May In the popular Broadway musical “Hamilton,” Aaron Burr, who has been excluded from important political decisions, sings, “No one really knows how the game is played. The art of the trade, how the sausage gets made. We just assume that it happens. But no one […]

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  • Virginia redistricting case presents Supreme Court with a mind-reading problem

    December 10, 2016 • Posted In: • News

    Editorial Culpeper Star Exponent On Monday, Justice Elena Kagan distilled the essence of the Supreme Court fight over Virginia’s legislative redistricting when she observed, “We know that race and politics correlate. If race is the motive, you get one result, and if politics is your motive, you get another.”

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  • McDonnell: “Almost there” on independent redistricting

    December 09, 2016 • Posted In: • Other

    Daily Press By Travis Fain Former Virginia Gov. Bob McDonnell sat with the Daily Press for more than an hour recently, generating an article that will go live a little later today, and a sidebar wherein he defends his administration’s dealings on two controversial road projects: U.S. 460 and the Downtown/Midtown tunnels. He also spoke at length about […]

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  • Virginia redistricting case presents Supreme Court with a mind-reading problem

    December 08, 2016 • Posted In: • News

    Richmond Times-Dispatch Editorial On Monday Justice Elena Kagan distilled the essence of the Supreme Court fightover Virginia’s legislative redistricting when she observed, “We know that race and politics correlate. If race is the motive, you get one result, and if politics is your motive, you get another.” For years the high court has insisted that while racial considerations […]

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  • Viewpoints: Nonpartisan redistricting gaining momentum?

    December 08, 2016 • Posted In: • News

    Viewpoints Augusta Free Press  Brian Cannon from OneVirginia2021 joins Viewpoints to talk about the push for nonpartisan political redistricting in Virginia. (VIDEO)

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  • Mapping out Virginia’s votes

    December 07, 2016 • Posted In: • News

    Editorial  The Daily Press  Voting districts are quite a bit like the pieces to a jigsaw puzzle. The size is more or less uniform but the shapes are odd and unwieldy — little notches here, shapeless protuberances there and inexplicable angles everywhere. Individually, the shapes appear random, but when put together carefully they form a […]

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  • High court hears arguments in two redistricting cases

    December 05, 2016 • Posted In: • News

    The Washington Post by Robert Barnes Justice Anthony M. Kennedy seemed to hold the key in two redistricting cases Monday where the justices were considering whether Republicans had unconstitutionally packed minority voters together to limit their influence. His comments should cause concern for Virginia lawmakers, who lost at the court last term for the way they […]

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  • Justices Wrestle With Role of Race in Redistricting

    December 05, 2016 • Posted In: • News

    The New York Times By ADAM LIPTAK In a pair of spirited arguments on Monday, the Supreme Court returned to the question of what role race may play in drawing legislative maps. The two cases, from Virginia and North Carolina, were the court’s latest attempts to solve a constitutional puzzle: how to disentangle the roles of race and partisanship […]

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  • Eric Holder To Lead Democrats’ New Redistricting Effort

    December 05, 2016 • Posted In: • News

    Huffington Post Paul Blumenthal  Former Attorney General Eric Holder announced Monday that he will be the chairman of the National Democratic Redistricting Committee, a new organization meant to act as a hub for Democratic Party efforts to gain control of the next redistricting process.

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  • Supreme Court Considers Race, Politics And Redistricting In 2 Cases

    December 05, 2016 • Posted In: • News

    NPR The U.S. Supreme Court has made clear over the past quarter century that racial gerrymandering is an unconstitutional no-no, but partisan gerrymandering is still permissible. The question is: How do you tell the difference? Especially when the Voting Rights Act allows for some consideration of race to ensure minority representation, and when party affiliation […]

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  • Supreme Court struggles to thread needle on race, politics, in Virginia redistricting case

    December 05, 2016 • Posted In: • News

    Daily Press by Travis Fain The nation’s highest court struggled Monday with an issue litigated over again in the hyper-partisan fight over drawing legislative and congressional district lines: How much consideration of race is too much? U.S. Supreme Court justices prodded attorneys on both sides of oral arguments Monday as they sought elusive balance in a case […]

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  • Kennedy Vote Seems Key to Supreme Court Redistricting Cases

    December 05, 2016 • Posted In: • News

    ABC News by Mark Sherman Justice Anthony Kennedy appears to hold the decisive vote in two Supreme Court cases involving challenges from African-American voters to electoral districts in North Carolina and Virginia. The court’s liberal and conservative justices seemed otherwise divided after arguments Monday about whether race played too large a role in creation of congressional districts in North Carolina and […]

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  • Supreme Court to hear another Virginia redistricting case

    December 05, 2016 • Posted In: • News

    The Daily Press by Travis Fain The U.S. Supreme Court will take up another Virginia redistricting case Monday, hearing arguments over whether racial population breakdowns were used to unfairly gerrymander a dozen House of Delegates districts, including two on the Peninsula. A panel of federal judges ruled 2-1 last year that they were not, keeping lines […]

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  • U.S. Supreme Court Should Overturn Partisan Redistricting

    December 04, 2016 • Posted In: • News

    Potomac Local by Del. Surovell Virginia is represented by Democrats in all five statewide offices, has voted for a Democratic president three times, yet the Virginia House of Delegates has 66 Republicans and 34 Democrats. This week, the U.S. Supreme Court heard arguments on the legality and constitutionality of the last redistricting of Virginia House of […]

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  • Va. pretty good at gerrymandering

    December 04, 2016 • Posted In: • News

    Free Lance-Star Editorial Board VIRGINIA didn’t invent gerrymandering. That distinction belongs to Massachusetts. First Thanksgiving: Virginia. Gerrymandering: Massachusetts. Still, we’ve gotten really good at gerrymandering congressional and state legislative districts. We’ve perfected it to the point that the U.S. Supreme Court sided with the 4th Circuit Court of Appeals in directing the commonwealth to redraw […]

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  • Redistricting matters

    December 04, 2016 • Posted In: • News

    Free Lance-Star by The Editorial Board Staff of the Free Lance-Star ANY doubt about the importance of controlling how state legislative and congressional districts are drawn has been erased by a bill proposed by Del. Mark Cole. The Spotsylvania County Republican wants the Virginia General Assembly to approve legislation next year to award the commonwealth’s […]

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  • Supreme Court Gets Involved In Redistricting

    December 04, 2016 • Posted In: • Other

    NPR Gerrymandering is a venerable American tradition. NPR’s Ailsa Chang gets the latest on court challenges to this practice from Nicholas Stephanopoulos, a lawyer for a plaintiff in one of the cases.

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  • Where Unfair Voting Practices Begin

    December 03, 2016 • Posted In: • News

    The New York Times by The Editorial Board Partisan gerrymandering — the drawing of federal or state legislative districts to benefit Republicans or Democrats — is among the most corrosive practices in modern American democracy. It lets incumbents keep themselves and their party in power even without majority support, it deprives voters of representatives who […]

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  • Amid bitter partisan battles, another N.C. voting case heads to Supreme Court

    December 02, 2016 • Posted In: • News

    The Washington Post by Robert Barnes Sometime after Barack Obama’s surprise win in 2008 and the tea party’s revenge two years later, what once passed for genteel politics in North Carolina began to more closely resemble hand-to-hand combat. At times, it’s hard to know which side is winning.

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  • Intelligence Squared U.S. Debates: Has Gerrymandering Destroyed the Political Middle

    November 30, 2016 • Posted In: • News

    Red River Radio It is alleged that the practice of gerrymandering—dividing election districts into units to favor a particular group—subverts democracy by making congressional districts “safe” for one party or the other. As a result, only those voting in primaries are in effect choosing our representatives. Are primary voters more extreme in their views, and […]

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  • Why down-ballot Democrats could be in the minority for years to come

    November 27, 2016 • Posted In: • News

    Reading Eagle (AP) One of the simplest explanations for Republicans majorities of nearly every level of government is President Barack Obama. Voters like a check on the party in the White House, and the check they put on Obama was particularly strong. So it stands to reason that the reverse is likely true: A President Donald […]

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  • After Republicans’ Redistricting Gains, Democratic State Legislatures Look To Compete

    November 27, 2016 • Posted In: • News

    NPR Weekend Edition Sunday In 2010, Republican legislatures redrew some districts to be more favorable to their party. NPR’s Linda Wertheimer talks to Jessica Post of the Democratic Legislative Campaign Committee.

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  • One key reason why Republicans dominate in state legislatures: They drew most of the districts

    November 26, 2016 • Posted In: • News

    Daily Kos By Stephen Wolf Republicans control 68 of the nation’s 99 state legislative chambers. They hold both chambers in 32 states, which contain 61 percent of the U.S. population. Democrats meanwhile hold just 31 chambers and both of them in only 13 states, amounting to a mere 28 percent of the population. Why are Republicans […]

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  • Federal Court Opens the Door to Restrictions on Partisan Gerrymandering

    November 23, 2016 • Posted In: • News

    New York Magazine By Ed Kilgore As the clock slowly ticks down toward the next decennial round of congressional and state legislative redistricting after the 2020 census, a federal court decision in Wisconsin could represent the beginning of a whole new regime of judicial supervision of partisan gerrymandering. The 2-1 decision from a three-judge district court panel is […]

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