It's time to 'terminate' gerrymandering
For the second time in two years, the Supreme Court had a chance to put a stop to the insane partisan gerrymandering that disenfranchises voters, draws our elected representatives to ideological extremes and is one of the biggest hurdles to an effective and responsive system of government.
I knew the conservative justices were concerned with judicial overreach, but I also knew the map-drawing politicians in both of these cases were so obvious — actually giddy — about their scamming of the voters that it should infuriate anyone who cared about the right to vote.
And I knew that the disenfranchised voters didn’t have a remedy. Their only recourse was asking their state legislators — who have gleefully abused their redistricting power — to give up that power. Yeah, right.
A study conducted by the University of Southern California Schwarzenegger Institute, to be released shortly, found that in a surprisingly large number of U.S. states, minority rule occurs. In minority rule states, the state legislative popular vote does not match the partisan control of the state legislative chamber.
The following states are the top five worst legislative partisan gerrymanders as of 2019.
5. North Carolina
All of this is why I was certainly disappointed when the justices made the wrong kind of history by giving a green light to this extreme partisan gerrymandering.
This decision sets back the efforts of reformers around the country who know that voters should pick their representatives, not the other way around.
In the meantime, I am going to take this as a call to action.
I have already been in touch with campaigners in Nebraska, Pennsylvania, Texas, Arkansas, Oklahoma and Virginia to let them know that I will support their reform initiatives. I have also been in touch with Common Cause, the League of Women Voters and other reform organizations/foundations to let them know that I will continue to work alongside them for reform.
The Supreme Court has told the voters that they are on their own to put a stop to this centuries-old scam that becomes exponentially more dangerous as the politicians develop better technologies to refine their malpractice.
Challenge accepted. It’s time for us to get to work.
Please join me and other New Way leaders to terminate gerrymandering once and for all.
-Arnold Schwarzenegger, California's 38th Governor