Home 2012 races While Dems Were Sleeping, Repubs Stole Our Vote

While Dems Were Sleeping, Repubs Stole Our Vote

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Once upon a time, we believed in one person-one vote.  How quaint of us!  Of course, historically, we got sidetracked from that with discounting the lives of African Americans and native peoples. But once we emerged from the segregation era, we believed that perhaps once and for all, the equality of people would be respected.  We were so wrong. Minorities are a primary target of the gerrymanderers.  And so are the rest of Democrats.

Remember, this is the era of GOPhers trying to keep people from voting in so many ways.  They try to challenge them at the polls causing them to use provisional ballots that will never be counted. They send out folks to flier minority cars telling them not to try to vote or they will be arrested.  They use phony felon databases to purge non-felons from the voter rolls.  And, in Virginia, they refuse to restore felon voting rights.  They keep those prisons-for-profit filled and the voter rolls smaller. And now, even more than before, they dilute Democratic votes via gerrymandering.

Take a look at this article on redistricting in Politico.  In a maneuver Tom Delay would be proud of, the Virginia Congressional delegation has a redistricting plan for you.  In a state roughly split 50-50 along Democrat/Republican lines, Dems get only 3 majority districts.  That is to say, districts have been gerrymandered to assure Dems only get 3 districts and GOPhers get 8. /11 on into the future.  It should be half.  That is to say, half the districts should be majority Democratic districts, not necessarily with Democratic Congressional electeds.  But Democrats have been spliced, diced and fragmented into oblivion.

There was a bipartisan redistricting commission, but the GOP pretty much laughed it out of the room.  Nice job, Morgan Griffith.  (We here in the 9th tried to warn the rest of the state what he was like, but too few listened.) He promised to assure the protection of Republican districts and he did.  

This is a Constitutional issue.  We have the right to be counted.  But the arbiter of any complaints is ultimately the courts.  Oops, they are loaded with Republicans and open seats are blocked until the next Republican gets into office.  There has got to be a more honest, honorable, decent, ethical, and AMERICAN way of doing things.  But what the hey; where there is an opportunity, they abuse power. It is the official REPUBLICAN PARTY way.

What’s worse is that Dems are unlikely to do anything about any of this. And so, life in VA will suck into the next decade and beyond. We are lucky to have a number of Democrats in the Virginia Senate. The only problem is that there may not be 14 of them to make a bold move to serve as catalysts for a movement. Is there anyone out there, anyone? WANTED: A Virginia 14! Meanwhile, it’s time to start making GOP lives suck, Wisconsin style.  

  • See here.

    h/t: NLS

  • Cool_Arrow

    As it is right now the State Senate Democrats have achieved a majority with a Republican drawn map. Their hold is pretty minor right now and allowing them to draw their own map will likely allow them to lock in a stronger majority. Under the current Senate map they are toast quite probable. A court drawn map is a crap shoot. I know that there is no mention about the Senate Dems here but basically if the 8 GOP members of the House Delegation buy off on this you can expect the House GOP/Senate Dems/McDonell to buy off on this as well.

    I get why the 3 Dems would like their new map but it will be a shame to only have 3 Reps in a closely divided state.

    If this map comes true or close to being true there are going to be a lot of barely leaning GOP districts. Though the VADP absolutely sucks at candidate recruitment so that the GOP’s ace most likely. Other than the 6th and 9th others likely won’t be more than R+6. Whittman looks like he takes on a lot more of PWC for example. Still a tough hurdle to climb but not impossible, I am interested to see what the new 7th is. Cantor looks to have compacted a bit. What I wouldn’t give for that empty suit to lose.

    I would have loved to have seen a better map and hope that this isn’t true but I can’t say that I am surprised. We better keep the State Senate now. Can we actually recruit candidates that can force some of these clowns into a race. I mean even making Goodlatte have an opponent would be nice.  

  • George Jefferson Davis

    There are obviously problems with this map from many points of view, and we don’t know what the final will be, but thought it was interesting to note that the 5th would still include Ivy, VA, possibly setting Tom Perriello up for a rematch with Robert Hurt, albeit in slightly worse territory(no Martinsville, Brunswick for example.) There were rumblings of moving the line a few more miles to get him out.

    Sidenote, the 4th cracks me up for some reason. Chesapeake and Chesterfield? Why not.

  • drobertson

    Tweets that the Obama DOJ may look at using the Voting Rights Act to force the creation of a second majority African-American district (his idea of what it might look like included in the tweet). Personally I say good for them.  

  • FreeDem

    It would be good to get a second majority African-American district in Virginia to add some diversity to representation in our delegation. I’d argue that even the Congressional plan that Republicans claim is a “lock” for them for the next decade could elect some Democrats, but they wouldn’t be safe and would end up being rather conservative. A more consistent voice for average folks would be a step in the right direction.

    The downside is that turning the 4th into a majority-minority district would probably so undermine the Democratic base in the 5th and potentially 2nd they could very well be Republican locks for the next decade. That would leave only the 10th and the 1st as districts that could be competitive over the next ten years. And it’s a shame because Charlottesville and its surrounding areas are growing and leaning Democratic. Keeping them in a competitive district would be wise.