Episode 1715: Democrats Gerrymander New York’s District Lines

Episode 1715: Democrats Gerrymander New York’s District Lines

Thank you for joining this week’s edition of the Albany Update.

Article I, Section 2 of the United States Constitution requires that a census be taken every ten years. Following the decennial count, the resulting numbers are used to draw legislative district lines corresponding to whatever population shifts may have occurred during the last decade. This redrawing of district maps is referred to as redistricting. Redistricting is a topic that has dominated Albany dialogue in recent days.

Members of Congress, State Senators and Members of Assembly care about redistricting because it has great impact on their political prospects. A district that results in a larger number of Republican voters than Democrat ones, makes it more likely for a Republican candidate to win the seat. If a district has a greater concentration of Democrats, it may encourage more Democratic candidates to run for office, while discouraging GOP challengers. Members of the public should care about the drawing of these political boundary lines because it has great bearing on how they’ll be represented in legislative chambers.

For the first time, the Democratic Majorities in Albany singlehandedly controlled the redistricting process. As a result, good government groups and the GOP are both crying foul at the gerrymandered result.

In today’s program, we’ll examine New York state’s redistricting process.

Let’s get started.