[EM] More on Gerrymander prevention

Michael Rouse mrouse at cdsnet.net
Thu Mar 21 13:45:18 PST 2002

Another way to lessen (though not eliminate) gerrymandering would be to
apportion districts by the total number of *votes* cast in the general
election rather than the total *population* of the United States and divide
by the total number of representatives. Then apportion representatives by
number of votes cast.

This would not only make districts reflect population trends more quickly
(every two years rather than every ten), but an uncompetitive race would
tend to have a lower turnout, leading to fewer (and more competive)
districts in the state for the next election. States would have an incentive
to encourage voters to go to the polls, election officials would have a
reason to count every legitimate voter, and other states would have a reason
to keep an eye out for Chicago-style deceased voters (since it would lessen
their own power).

Of course this would take a constitutional amendment, and the census would
still be a valuable governmental tool, but coupled with automated
apportionment and a Condorcet-completion method this would be very cool
indeed! (Ok, this isn't very likely, but why not shoot for the moon?)

Michael Rouse
mrouse at cdsnet.net

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