How To Cheat The Black Community Out Of Votes

Gerrymandering/Jared Rodriguez/Flickr/CC-NC-SA-2.0

January 16, 2018

Groups have always organized to suppress the Black vote, but since the 2010 election, it seems Republicans are determined to make the Black vote useless.

Gerrymandering, a method used to gain an advantage for a political party, is an old political tactic that involves redrawing electoral districts.

Both political parties have used the tactic, and Republicans have taken it to a new level.

REDMAP, the Redistricting Majority Map, is gerrymandering on steroids. It’s a plan devised by Republican strategist Chris Jankowski to secure Republican seats.

Every decade, the country collects a census and during the census year, state legislatures change the electoral maps. Republicans suffered in the 2008 election, but Jankowski saw a way to get those seats back.

He targeted states where the legislature could redraw the lines. In 2010, the Republican Party took seats from Democrats and they were able to redraw the lines, thus having votes swing their way.

While the Democrats won more votes in 2012 and the Republican base was on the decline, they still have a majority of seats in the state houses, as seen in the 2017 Virginia legislative elections.

Along with voter ID laws and sparse polling locations, Republicans had another method of keeping Black votes low: creating majority-minority voting districts.

In the late 1980s and early 1990s, Republican attorney Ben Ginsberg worked with Black politicians to create these districts in keeping with the Voting Rights Act of 1965.

While it spawned the largest Black congressional caucus since the Reconstruction era, it made districts around them more homogenous and white, bolstering votes for Republicans.

The U.S. Census Bureau reported that non-Hispanic whites will be less than 50 percent of the population by 2044. Black folks tend to disproportionately vote Democrat, a move that Republicans fear will take away their influence in national politics.

If you’re interested in knowing more about REDMAP, read David Daley’s Ratf**ked: The True Story Behind the Secret Plan to Steal America’s Democracy.

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