Gerrymandering: A Threat to Democracy

Editor's Note: The following is a guest editorial and invitation on the topic of Gerrrymandering.

Gerrymandering is the art that politicians use to draw district voting lines to ensure one thing only – that the party in power stays in power.

Two nonpartisan groups have emerged in Michigan to curb this unjust action – Count Mi Vote and Voters Not Politicians. Count Mi Vote, the educational arm of the movement is currently holding Redistricting Town Hall meetings across Michigan to educate the public about gerrymandering and to collect public opinion on a proposed ballot measure to create a Citizens Redistricting Commission that would be charged with drawing fair and just voting districts within the State of Michigan.

Voters Not Politicians is the action arm of the two groups and is involved with helping to formulate the exact ballot wording, as well as organizing the ballot drive itself.

The images below compare the current congressional district map to a map drawn by a partisan blind algorithm that simply maximized compactness of the districts. One can immediately see that the current system is profoundly different from the partisan neutral system.

I urge to you to attend the Redistricting Town Hall slated for Traverse City on Friday, March 24th from 6 – 8 PM At NMC, Scholars Hall Room 109, to have your voices heard, the cut off for public input ends in March, and to join forces with Voters Not Politicians in the ballot drive measure.

Page Kurtz

Suttons Bay, MI

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