Showing posts tagged with: "redistricting"

Three young, professional african-americans looking at the camera

Representation Matters: Redistricting and Helping Communities of Color . February 17, 2021

If 2020 has done anything, it served as a reminder that when society suffers, communities of color suffer worse. Even during times of national stress — whether that’s COVID infection rates, police brutality or unemployment numbers — America’s structural shortcomings have a disproportionate impact on populations of color.  And while the former administration, aided by read more

Political Reform Wins Big in the States . November 7, 2018

By large margins voters said “YES” to sweeping reforms in how we register and vote. Amidst high youth voter turnout, ballot measures rode a wave of support to change how we do redistricting, register voters, pay for campaigns, re-engage ex-offenders, cast and count votes. Independent Redistricting Commissions Americans voted overwhelmingly to take away the power read more

Courts Endorse Nonpartisan Redistricting . July 31, 2015

When it comes to elections, the nonprofit sector is the only sector required by law to be nonpartisan. Why shouldn’t the administration of elections have the same requirement? Unfortunately, most states still allow legislative incumbents to choose their voters before voters get to choose them. Last week the U.S. Supreme Court and Florida Supreme Court read more


Commission on Political Reform Releases Recommendations . June 30, 2014

In 2013, the Bipartisan Policy Center created a Commission on Political Reform to investigate the causes and consequences of America’s partisan political divide and to advocate for specific reforms to improve the political process. Their new report, Governing in a Polarized America: A Bipartisan Blueprint to Strengthen our Democracy, identifies reforms in three specific areas: read more

Texas Maps on Trial . December 16, 2011

The U.S. Supreme Court has agreed to hear an appeal from Texas Republicans over whether a panel of federal judges acted properly when it replaced the state legislature’s congressional map with its own. The judges’ map was the result of a lawsuit that claimed the legislature-drawn map did not give adequate opportunity for minority groups read more

Redistricting Continues in 19 States . November 16, 2011

As of last week, nineteen states are still without final districts. The redistricting process went smoothly and quickly in some states, but in others, maps are already in courts and others will be soon. In Arizona, Governor Jan Brewer led a(n initially) successful charge to oust the chairwoman of the state’s independent commission. However, the read more

California Moves Closer to Finalizing New Districts . August 8, 2011

The California Citizens Redistricting Commission recently approved the final drafts of the state’s new district maps, setting the stage for its next challenge–potential lawsuits. The commission must formally certify the maps by August 15 and present them to the secretary of state, although Californians can challenge the districts in court or at the polls. Redistricting read more

In California, Redistricting Input Generates Results . June 16, 2011

Did you attend a local redistricting hearing to offer testimony about your community? If so, rest assured that it paid off. Last week California’s Citizens Redistricting Commission released the first set of draft redistricting maps. Upon their release, Greenlining Institute Redistricting Fellow Michelle Romero noted “One thing that’s clear is that when communities turned out read more

Combating Prison-Based Gerrymandering . June 6, 2011

Although some states have already finished the redistricting process, many are still hard at work. Earlier this year, the Prison Policy Initiative released a new set of factsheets on prison-based gerrymandering. The factsheets highlight how the practice is disenfranchising minority voters nationwide, particularly African-Americans, Latinos, and American Indians. Prison-based gerrymandering starts with where the Census read more

Sacramento Makes Redistricting a City Affair . April 29, 2011

In California, redistricting has become a public affair with the creation of the new Citizens Redistricting Commission. But Sacramento is making the local redistricting process more public and transparent. They’ve developed a free online tool that lets anyone participate by drawing their own district boundaries for consideration by the city’s committee, and eventually city council. read more

Iowa Completes Redistricting Process . April 20, 2011

The wait is finally over in Iowa. On Tuesday Governor Terry Branstad signed the state’s new redistricting plan, officially eliminating one of Iowa’s five previous congressional seats. The new map was drawn by an independent body and approved by both houses of the state legislature before being signed by the governor. What that means for read more

Mandering Madness . March 30, 2011

Unless you’re one of a select few, your tournament bracket is probably busted. Although March is almost over, (Gerry)Mandering Madness has only just begun! Last week the Census delivered the final state-level files that are used for redistricting. So what’s next for your state? In Iowa, where redistricting has traditionally been a low-key affair, the read more

The Latest from the U.S. Census . March 25, 2011

Yesterday the Census Bureau delivered the last of the state-level files from the 2010 Census. That means every state is now armed and ready for redistricting, and many are already knee-deep in it. In addition to more redistricting data, we learned a few other things about the nation’s population. For example, the U.S. mean center read more

Wednesday’s Webinar on Redistricting . March 18, 2011

Thank you to everyone who participated in Wednesday’s webinar, Getting a Seat at the Table: What Nonprofits Should Know About Redistricting. A special thanks to our presenter Justin Levitt for lending us his expertise. The PowerPoint is available for download along with the audio portion of the presentation in MP3 format. Alternatively, you can watch read more

Redistricting Webinar Wednesday! . March 14, 2011

Don’t forget to join us Wednesday for our first webinar of 2011: Getting a Seat at the Table: What Nonprofits Should Know About RedistrictingWednesday, March 16th at 2:00pm EasternRedistricting is right around the corner and critical decisions will be made that can affect our communities, our missions, and our funding for the next decade. Tune read more

Nonprofit VOTE Webinar Series Returns in March! . February 24, 2011

The dates are set for our first two webinars of 2011! Please join us for:Getting a Seat at the Table: What Nonprofits Should Know About RedistrictingWednesday, March 16th at 2:00pm EasternRedistricting is right around the corner and critical decisions will be made that can affect our communities, our missions, and our funding for the next read more

Students Draw the Lines in Virginia . December 8, 2010

The 2011 Virginia College and University Legislative Redistricting Competition was recently announced, and will allow students to take a stab at redistricting their state. After Census data is made available, student teams will draw Virginia’s congressional and state legislative districts using software developed by the Public Mapping Project. (See our earlier post for more on read more

Redistricting Reform . November 15, 2010

Last week we discussed the basics of redistricting and gerrymandering, and today we’re going to cover how voters are taking back the process from legislators. Each state redistricts differently. In Iowa, two men and a computer are responsible for the process. In some states—like Arizona, Hawaii, Idaho, Indiana, Montana, New Jersey, and Washington—special bi-partisan commissions read more

Counting prisoners in the wrong place? . December 21, 2009

African-American leaders weigh in on the impact of counting prisoners, ineligible to vote in 48 states, in prisons versus their home communities. Why count people in far away communities where they cannot vote nor derive any benefit from local services?

Gerrymandering: Pure and Corrupt . November 12, 2009

Why do we continue to allow legislators to redraw their own districts? That is the question a recent editorial in the New York Times asks. Every 10 years, following the decennial census, state legislators around the county sit down to redraw not only congressional districts, but also their own state legislative districts. In effect, legislators read more

More on Redistricting . October 28, 2009

With 2009 elections approaching, the 2010 Census on the horizon, and America’s midterm elections only a year away, now is the time to take a few minutes to understand what it means to redraw our district lines. Here are a few useful and fun learning tools. A Citizen’s Guide to Redistricting from the Brennan Center’s read more