* Seeing a lot of this out there already, so listen to Hannah…
Not saying shapes aren't a consideration in whether a district is gerrymandered, but it's not the ONLY consideration and freaking out about ~crazy shapes~ only does your audience a disservice. Thank you for coming to my TED Talk.
Please don't take this as me defending the proposed maps or saying there's no gerrymandering (see below https://t.co/0pvJcFwx5z) I'm merely asking people to look beyond the "wacky shapes" and dig deeper. The Voting Rights Act makes strange shapes are inevitable in many districts. https://t.co/orjFb0WQUN
The foolish takes about “Wild West” or “anything goes” wholly ignores the Voters Rights Act and why some shapes are not only not gerrymandering, it’s ensuring access.
Good takes by Hannah. If you’re not listening to Hannah here, you’re missing the point, ignoring the Voter Rights Act, and…
… if you feel the “need” to make the map about how your “toddler” colors a map without addressing the Voter Rights Act and how meeting those criteria in “odd shaped” districts isn’t by any measure “gerrymandering”, maybe leave all that map making to the “adults”, you’re not qualified to address the issues in an honest way.
To that specifically? Ok…
The whole comparing IL to any state near us like Iowa, Indiana, or Wisconsin, the futility to explain how ridiculous that is when Illinois has diversity and meeting our own goals within the Voter Rights Act, those complaining about, “shape, cutting, or oddity”, you’re missing the point of inclusion and access.
A few years ago, Last Week Tonight made a very similar observation as Hannah. At 13:30 they used Chuy Garcia’s district as an example of why odd shaped districts aren’t necessarily bad. Even better, they used Vince Demuzio’s smirk at about 10:30.
I agree with some caveats The requirement to create voting rights district give cartographers much more leeway to draw to achieve diversity districts. It’s the non-voting rights districts that demonstrate some extreme gerrymandering. Just look at dist 76, I assume once we have voting detail that entire district will follow a blue line and be surrounded by red. that’s gerrymandering.
Not only the VRA: drawing a lot of squares over Chicagoland, would be one of the most efficient Republican “packing” techniques so that Democrats might have fewer seats in Springfield.
I think the political scientist Jonathan Ladd clarified that to “prevent gerrymandering” could mean, about -six- different possible goals, and the problem is if you try and achieve some of these goals, you inevitably violate others, meaning that somebody will call just about -any- final map “gerrymandered,” since they’re not beginning from the same definition.
For instance, Republicans in IL (understandably) prize the goal of “party competition” where as many state and federal legislative seats are as competitive as possible. And so they are also big on “compactness and contiguity” (except where they’re not, probably in some complicated case somewhere Downstate). But the problem is in IL, to really draw a map that way, you’re going to violate a principle of “party fairness” (where the Democrats’ seats-to-votes ratio, is lower, since a 99% Democratic district in Chicagoland can’t elect any more Democrats to Springfield than a 55% Democratic district that takes in some of the burbs).
Key here is that nobody is operating from the same definition of what “gerrymandering” even means so the whole debate is a mess.
I actually don’t think the districts outside of Cook County look that bizarre. Will be interesting to see how the Hispanic voting population will be represented. The redistricting for council positions inside the City of Chicago will be an even greater adventure as the Hispanic population has increased.
Mixture. I think it’s good to draw a district with both Bloomington & Peoria because they’re similar types of communities even if it looks bacon-shaped. I see a harder time justifying some of the boundaries in southwest Chicagoland.
I am not a data scientist by any measure of the imagination and would be open to someone’s statistical analysis of the map but at first glance this looks fair. (I will acknowledge my own bias in that view.)
Some of the changes are fascinating to the point where I think everyone might benefit from looking at a side by side comparison of the 2010 and proposed maps as a representation of the changing demographics of Illinois.
Amidst the multiple gerrymandered downstate districts, take a look at the draft house 71 district. It looks like a candlestick that starts in Macomb and goes all the way north to Rock Island County … a real work of art
Candy Dogood - comparing the proposed maps to the current gerrymandered maps does not give any insight into whether the proposed maps are good. The stated intention in Illinois’ redistricting criteria to minimize boundary changes only serves to perpetuate badly drawn maps. That’s in addition to being the height of hypocrisy considering that the gerrymanders of the past few decades are themselves a substantial deviation from the much more compact districts that existed before computerized map drawing.
- EssentialStateEmployeeFromChatham - Monday, May 24, 21 @ 11:45 am:
==I think it’s good to draw a district with both Bloomington & Peoria because they’re similar types of communities even if it looks bacon-shaped.==
That’s an extension of what happened with the Springfield-Decatur seat (Scherer’s 96th) starting 10 years ago and will continue in this new map in the proposed 48th Senate and both the 95th and 96th House.
Would love to know given the super-transparent process as to how we got to this whether this is the most efficient map in compliance (not stipulating that it is) with the VRA. How is anyone to know?
- Leap Day William - Monday, May 24, 21 @ 12:09 pm:
== I am not a data scientist by any measure of the imagination and would be open to someone’s statistical analysis of the map but at first glance this looks fair. ==
I am a data scientist, and while I can’t speak much for the Chicagoland districts, downstate looks pretty fair to me just off a very cursory glance. That’s where the largest percentage of population loss is occurring (tbh, probably more to old age attrition and young people who grew up there not coming back than any rabble rousing about taxes), and that’s where the seat losses should be.
===comparing the proposed maps to the current gerrymandered maps===
So what you’re saying is that there was zero gerrymandering involved in the creation of the 2010 maps? Interesting.
I said “fascinating.” When you look at the changes from 2010 and 2020 proposed maps it the only demographic change that is easy to spot is the change in concentration of population and that is what I was referring to and it is very suggestive that in order to achieve a majority in the State of Illinois a political party is going to need to focus on and address the issues that are important to where people were reportedly living when the 2020 census was completed. A pragmatic approach to policy would suggest that the Illinois GOP would need to update a lot of it’s policy positions to address the things that are important to the people who are living in the places where the population is larger.
Whatever their current strategy is I think came about without a lot of deliberation, but now that they’ve been screaming the quiet part out loud for so long I would wonder if they could successfully shift their party to be an organization that successfully saddles shared urban and rural concerns while trying to remain loyal to the social issues that have defined their party and trying to maintain the economic issues that causes billionaires to fund them in an effort to hire half of the poor to kill the other half.
Though my assessment is based off of presuming that I can understand what the over all goal of the Illinois GOP is — and maybe I don’t. Perhaps we should ask Representative Chris Miller what he thinks it is after he participated in an insurrection and was throwing decals for a terrorist organization on his truck what he thinks the goal of the Illinois GOP is, after all, they’re still talking about the opposition as “Democrat Terrorists.”
So maybe screaming about how the maps are unfair and all of the elections that they don’t win are rigged is part of a Big Lie that will be used to justify use of violence against legitimately elected leaders a few years from now and that’s their plan because it’s easier than trying to abandon bigotry and living in a billionaires pocket.
=Bloomington & Peoria because they’re similar types of communities=
I would respectfully disagree with that statement.
Other than being small/medium downstate cities the two are very different. Peoria trends blue and Bloomington/Normal is red. Very different demographics as well.
Peoria is slowly declining as the industrial base shrinks, Blo/No is more economically modern (maybe not more diverse due to the dependence on State Farm and ISU).
- lake county democrat - Monday, May 24, 21 @ 12:38 pm:
Here’s a good discussion of the Voting Rights Act - are the map makers truly contending that they need to make these contorted shapes in order to create sufficient “minority-majority” districts to comply with the act? Also, the discussion at the end is particularly apt - packing minorities into such district arguably takes away the groups overall influence simply to have a “safe as milk” representative in that district.
I would suggest that drawing in district lines to achieve any particular (preconceived)composition of the district’s population-other than equal population- IS “gerrymandering”. I’ve noticed some folks like some forms of gerrymandering, while some folks approve of others, but it’s still all gerrymandering when the population of a district is chosen for any reason other than equal numbers of voters.
- lake county democrat - Monday, May 24, 21 @ 5:03 pm:
It’s not gerrymandering to draw a district for the purposes of the Voting Rights Act, but it is gerrymandering to draw the district to try to gain an advantage in an election. If the mapmakers can make a case that they *had* to draw these twisted districts in order to meet the goals of the VRA, they should do that, but the burden should be on them to show it, not us to accept those words as a talisman.
My biggest complaint is towns/cities being subdivided into multiple districts. My town of 35,000 looks to be split into 3 different senate districts, and remain 2 different house districts. This dilutes the community’s voice by making it a smaller part of 2 or 3 districts.
You need to update your perception of Bloomington-Normal.
McLean County went for Biden and Durbin in 2020. The McLean County Board split is currently only 11-9 GOP. Normal Township has a Dem majority. Normal rejected the pro-Trump slate of councilmembers in the recent election. Until recently the Bloomington mayor was ex-Dem candidate Tari Renner.
B-N is trending blue the same way suburbs are. Lots of diverse, college-educated folks in and moving to town means lots of Dems.