Posted by: Ann Corcoran | October 8, 2011

In Maryland even the Dems are upset by O’Malley redistricting plan

Update:  There is more on this story at the Maryland Reporter, here, yesterday.  (Hat tip: Cathy)

We reported here earlier that the Democrats who control the state legislature and the state house are gunning for Maryland’s 6th Congressional District which has been in Republican hands for two decades.   Now here comes news from the “Peoples Republic” of Montgomery County, that minorities are not happy with what is happening.

From the Washington Examiner a few days ago:

Montgomery County lawmakers are dismissing Maryland’s proposed congressional map, saying that new boundaries bolstering the Democratic Party’s stranglehold of the state would come at the expense of minority voters in the suburb.

Under a proposal released this week from the state’s heavily Democratic redistricting panel, Democratic Rep. Donna Edwards’ 4th District would remain concentrated in Prince George’s County but would shed minority pockets of Montgomery County. In the process, Rep. John Sarbanes’ District 3 would shift to include both portions of Baltimore and suburban Washington.

Montgomery County Council President Valerie Ervin, D-Silver Spring, said the blueprint “looked like gerrymandering” and that “African American voters were taken for granted once again.”

They think that by giving more of Montgomery County away to other districts that that will break up minority power bases.

Councilman Craig Rice, D-Germantown, also blasted the proposal.

“There is a real concern about a weakening of power in the minority community,” he said. “They try to make it better for their candidates — I understand that. But they have a responsibility to make sure voters have proper representation. This is not the case [with the plan].”

And, then this was interesting.  I guess melting into America is not in the plan for power hungry Hispanics.  They want to live and work, what?, in little countries within a country.  Is that what she is saying?   Does she want a little El Salvador in the heart of Maryland?

State Del. Ana Sol Gutierrez, noting that Montgomery is now primarily made up of Hispanic residents, pushed state officials to “no longer fragment and split up Hispanic communities.”


Responses

  1. I dislike all gerrymandering, whether it’s racial or party-oriented, whether it’s done by my side or by opponents. Creating minority districts has had the result of further dividing us, as voters are being told that their interests are different from the interests of other races. And creating safe seats by moving borders around means that politicians don’t need to take other views into account and learn how to talk to people unlike themselves. I wish that nationally redistricting were done by creating districts strictly geographically, with the lines drawn to make the most compact districts. This is, no wiggles to include and exclude, no oddly shaped districts to make them “safe.”

    By the way, the origin of the word gerrymander was a district in Massachusetts that was drawn so long and with such wiggly boundaries that it looked like a salamander. The governor who oversaw the redistricting was Elbridge Gerry, so the press invented the word gerrymander. That was in 1812, so this has been going on for a long time.

  2. I kind of understand their argument: If the lines change and minority, democratic vote leaves, say, Montgomery county, and moves to, say, Frederick county, with the purpose of making Frederick county more democratic, it does. But what Montgomery county is saying is: Yes, but, by strengthing the base in Frederick county you are weakening our base here in Montgomery county, and thereby taking the power away from us. And we like our power just the way it is, thank you! You see, even liberals hate liberals.
    And Judy, thank you for the history lesson, I have for a long time wondered where the word “gerrymandering came from. Interesting.


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