Thursday, May 24, 2012

Who is going to benefit the most from California’s redistricting? Some say Democrats have the edge

Something to ponder.

In two weeks, California voters will take part in an intriguing electoral experiment –and while House Democrats are likely to emerge better off from it, the question is how much better off? Will they see a net gain of two or three House seats? Or perhaps a five, six, or seven seat score?

When Californians cast their ballots in the June 5 primary, they’ll be in new congressional districts drawn not by political insiders, as was done in the past (and as is still done in most states), but by a citizen panel.

For decades, House members and their allies in the state legislature used gerrymandering to protect incumbents of both parties. That changed when voters adopted citizen redistricting in 2008. (Read more here)

As governor, Republican Arnold Schwarzenegger “pushed redistricting reform for the purpose of creating competitive seats” and “Republicans had dreamed that the whole state would become competitive as a result of this process,” said Bruce Cain, professor of political science at the University of California, Berkeley, and an expert on redistricting in the state.

Now, the experts are saying the Democrats are going to benefit more than those “dreaming” Republican pols.

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