Brummett:Will Democrats Gerrymander Fayetteville into South Arkansas? (part 1)

 

In his article “Pig Trail Gerrymander refuses to die,” Arkansas News Bureau, March 17, 2011, John Brummett asserts:

A prominent Democrat was explaining to me the other day that Arkansas is neither still a Democratic state nor newly a Republican one. As regards our four congressional districts, he asserted, Arkansas “feels like 2-and-2.”

That sense aside, the state currently goes 3-to-1 for Republicans.

Beyond that, any logical or obvious redrawing of the four congressional districts under the new Census seems to strengthen or preserve the Republican inclinations of three of the four, all but the 4th across southern Arkansas, which now has the only Democratic representative, Mike Ross.

That, then, is the point of the Pig Trail Gerrymander.

That is my name for this absurdly still-viable notion to extend the 4th District northward along a squiggly line from some wilderness area out between Ozark and Alma and run it up narrowly to carve the Democratic-leaning city of Fayetteville out of the otherwise overwhelmingly Republican 3rd District and attach it to the 4th.

This intergalactic idea sprang from a back room all the way across the state from Fayetteville, in eastern Arkansas.

It was not concocted for any reason having to do with either of the affected districts, the 4th or 3rd. Instead it was contrived wholly to try to protect against any further Republicanization of the eastern region’s 1st District, which went Republican last year for the first time since Reconstruction.

Democrats think they can take it back, thus forging the 2-to-2 split they assert as some kind of natural-seeming order.

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 Brummett is right when he asserts, “Instead it was contrived wholly to try to protect against any further Republicanization of the eastern region’s 1st District.”

The Republicanization of Arkansas on the federal level has happened at the same time it is happening on the State government level. The way things are going for the Democrats, they will be lucky to keep 40% of the State Reps and Senators in office in 2012. Look around at the states around us. Mississippi has a Democratic controlled House and a Republican Controlled Senate, but every other state (TX, TN, LA, MO, OK) have Republican control. After 2022 the Republicans will have rigged it where we will never have another Democratic Congressman from Arkansas. Every district will have 60% Republicans in it. Look at what length the Democrats are having to go to keep one district competitive (Putting Fayetteville in the South).

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