Main menu

Pages

Why Some Votes Are More Important Than Others: Democratic attacks on Trump's census proposal ignore the problems posed by drawing parliamentary districts according to residents rather than citizens.

featured image


Democrats refuse to give up the idea that the Trump administration’s push to change the census to count the number of citizens in each parliamentary district was a plan to elect more Republicans. The House Committee on Foreign Affairs and Reform, chaired by Upper East Side representative Carolyn Maloney, said in a report released last Wednesday: Target. “

Of course, we cannot ignore the possibility that the Republicans wanted more elections by manipulating how the parliamentary districts were portrayed. Both parties are doing this in the same way that New York Democrats failed to gerrymander a state parliamentary map this year.

But Democrats squeezing the fate of democracy pretend to be unaware that the current way of portraying parliamentary districts is a strong support for their own members. If the voter power of any party is diminished, it is that of the Republican Party. Many Democrats, especially parliamentary representatives like Alexandria Ocasio Cortez in New York, represent less legitimate resident districts, requiring less than average votes for elections. increase. Democrats want to say that all votes are important, but ignore the system in which some votes are more important than others.

The mechanism is as follows. Parliamentary districts are determined based on the number of residents, not the number of eligible “citizens”. That is, both legal and illegal non-citizen immigrants are included in the count for the purpose of drawing parliamentary districts. If migrants are found in equal numbers in all districts, that’s not a problem, but it’s not far away.

For example, in Ohio’s fourth parliamentary district (represented by the conservative Republican Jim Jordan), only 2 percent of the population is foreign-born. The Census Bureau reports that there are about 543,000 voters. Jordan won about 236,000 votes to win the reelection in 2020.

The situation is very different in the 14th New York district of Ocasio Cortez. There, a whopping 45% of the inhabitants are foreign-born, with a total of only 392,000 voters. The AOC received only about 152,000 votes to win the reelection, significantly less than Jordan. (Both were carried out in a safe area.)

These are no exceptions. The Immigration Research Center has found that drawing parliamentary districts by population rather than by number of citizens has what it calls the “partisan dimension.” Specifically, “Of the 16 districts where more than one in four adults are not American citizens, the Republican Party represents only one.” In other words, these require fewer votes to win. , The place where the Democratic Party has an advantage.

In addition, districts like AOC suffer from what can only be called taxation without a representative. She may claim to represent the interests of her district, but many of her “constituencies” cannot vote.

That doesn’t mean that non-citizens need to get the right to vote, as suggested by the New York City Council. Rather, it would be fairer to draw the parliamentary district based on the number of citizens rather than the total population. In effect, the current system has created what Britain once called a “rotten and pocket borough.” This is a parliamentary seat with few voters and can safely detain the party’s grande.

Democrats should encourage immigrants to win elections by becoming citizens and refresh their rotten and pocket boroughs in the process, rather than continuing to blame the late Trump administration for counting citizens. ..

Photo by Justin Sullivan / Getty Images