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Gerrymandering Denies Voters’ Rights, Lets Legislators Choose Their Voters

Gerrymandering is a powerful new documentary about the ways our elected officials draw the maps that deprive voters a real choice in most state and Congressional elections. Director Jeff Reichert and Kathay Feng of Common Cause. California voters, don’t be fooled: Yes on 20, No on 27. Reichert has delivered a superb film that graphically depicts the cynical way that elected officials rig redistricting to protect them from most challengers. We talk about Tom DeLay’s shameless “re-redistricting” that favored the GOP in Texas in 2005, and the long struggle in California to enact a fair redistricting commission. Gerrymandering opens October 15 at theaters in California; get more info here. About 600,000 California voters have been mailed a DVD of the documentary, so if you get one, pass it around. In the second segment starting at 34:37, Common Cause California Executive Director Kathy Feng joins us for a recent history of re-mapping in California and the bizarre districts still in effect this year that virtually guarantee that incumbents in both parties will be re-elected. She urges a Yes vote on Prop 20, which extends the new citizens’ redistricting panel’s jurisdiction to include Congressional districts, and No on Prop 27, which would repeal the new commission before it is even given a chance to fulfill its mission; 27 is funded by your local Congressperson and Speaker Pelosi. The original Prop 11 in 2008 barely passed, so every vote counts. It’s sad that many “progressive” groups are backing the pols’ efforts to blow up the citizens’ commission and allow the politicians to gerrymander California for another 10 years.