If you have ever seen the 435 congressional districts on a map you would probably think to yourself that it resembles something similar to one giant jigsaw puzzle. These districts vary in size and certainly in shape. Unlike how county lines are decided within states, the congressional districts change every ten years after the Census is released. Why do they have to change exactly? Well, the answer to that question receives the same frustrating answer heard again and again: It’s politics. The official name for the act of changing congressional lines to benefit a political party is “gerrymandering.” It has been the cause of many debates as well as many negative effects. Gerrymandering has had an unfair advantage in politics throughout
…show more content…
For example, through this redrawing act, Republicans were able to take back the House from the Democrats after the 2010 election, from only 178 representing to 242 representing in 2011, and that is when things started to gridlock (Party Divisions). With Democrats in the Senate and Republicans in the House, it became a perfect storm for a gridlock. It was most evident in 2013 when President Barack Obama was pushing towards his healthcare reform. As a way of showing that they would not work with Democrats at all, the Republicans were voting down almost everything that came from the other side, including when it came time to make a budget for the federal fiscal year. Both sides could not compromise on a budget, and as a result, the government “shutdown”. The negative impact is obvious, but there is even more of an impact than just furloughs.
To some gerrymandering has become more than just a way to help secure seats in the House, to some it is an underlying act of racism. Some of the biggest tools at their disposal are the acts of “packing” or even “cracking” minority groups. When redrawing the lines, if one minority group is large enough, the man holding the pen can split them apart in smaller groups so that their votes will not matter in the new zone. This act is called cracking. Another way to combat minority group’s voting powers is called