Tagged Gerrymandering

The Nation: Our Elections Really Are Rigged—by Gerrymandering and Districting Abuses

-By John Nichols

May 8, 2013- Mark Sanford’s comeback bid was never so audacious as America’s political gossip columnists would have us believe.

Yes, the conservative Republican once boomed as a presidential prospect, before drawing national headlines in 2009 when it turned out that he had not gone missing on the Appalachian Trail but had instead snuck off to visit a woman friend in Buenos Aires. Yes, revelations about the affair led to his resignation as chairman of the Republican Governors Association, to his being censured by the South Carolina General Assembly after a State Ethics Commission investigation into allegations that he had misused state travel funds and to his divorce from a popular South Carolina politico.

The Detroit News: Mich. GOP pushes on with electoral vote plan; Schostak re-elected

-By Gary Heinlein

February 24, 2013- Lansing — Republicans handed Bobby Schostak another two-year term as state chairman Saturday and overwhelmingly endorsed a plan to change Michigan presidential electoral vote rules in a way opponents charge is intended to distort election results in favor of GOP candidates.

By a 1,370-132 margin at the party convention in Lansing, GOP members approved a resolution backing a proposal from Rep. Pete Lund, R-Shelby Township, to divvy-up 14 of the state's 16 electoral votes according to which candidate got the most votes in each congressional district. The other two would go to the state-wide vote total winner.

That switch from a winner-take-all formula that has been in effect 175 years could water down the dominance Democrats have had in Michigan in presidential elections for the last 24 years.

Critics say the plan would have given Mitt Romney nine of Michigan's 16 electoral votes last year, although he lost by more than 500,00 votes to President Barack Obama state-wide. With the win, Obama captured all 16 Michigan electoral votes.

Roanoke Times: GOP Sen. Smith opposes bill to allocate presidential electoral votes by congressional district

– By Michael Sluss

January 25, 2013- If a bill to reapportion Virginia’s presidential electoral votes by congressional district is a Republican plot, someone forgot to tell state Sen. Ralph Smith, R-Bedford County.

Smith said this morning that he opposes the legislation, calling it “a bad idea.” Smith sits on the Senate Privileges and Elections Committee, which will hear the bill next week. Without Smith’s support, it’s unlikely the bill could get to the Senate floor. The Privileges and Elections Committee has eight Republicans and seven Democrats.

“What if all states got to skewing it to their advantage?” Smith said in an interview this morning.

Senate Bill 723 would allocate presidential electoral votes by congressional district rather than statewide popular vote. State Sen. Bill Carrico, R-Grayson County, introduced the measure.

MSNBC: GOP’s electoral vote scheme likely illegal in Virginia

-By Zachary Roth

January 25, 2013- A scheme under consideration in Virginia to rig the Electoral College in Republicans’ favor could well violate a key provision of the Voting Rights Act, experts on the law say. But that very provision is itself under challenge by the GOP, and could be struck down by the Supreme Court later this year.

A Republican bill that would allocate Virginia’s electoral votes based on the popular vote in each congressional district cleared its first hurdle in the state legislature Wednesday. Had the bill been in effect in the last election, Mitt Romney would have won 9 of Virginia’s 13 electoral votes, despite losing the popular vote in the state to President Obama by nearly 5 percentage points.

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