“New Common Cause report explains how drawing electoral boundaries based on citizens over age 18 advantages whites and steals representation from people of color.”
WASHINGTON D.C. – Drawing electoral boundaries using only data for citizens over age 18 abandons constitutional principles of one person, one vote, relies on fundamentally faulty data and is part of a patently partisan plot to shift representation away from communities of color to areas where white populations live, according to a new report released today by Common Cause, a nonpartisan government watchdog group.
Whitewashing Representation: How Using Citizenship Data to Gerrymander will Undermine our Democracy explains why state leaders should continue drawing electoral boundaries using a total count of the population to ensure all people are represented fairly in federal and state legislatures.
The report comes as GOP party operatives ramp up their efforts to gerrymander following the 2020 Census. Republican strategist Thomas Hofeller was caught recommending a citizenship question be added to the census to advantage “Republicans and Non-Hispanic Whites.” After failing to convince the U.S. Supreme Court that was necessary, President Trump ordered federal agencies to provide all data on citizenship to the U.S. Census Bureau, which will combine the citizenship data with its counts. The bureau is ordered to send the data to states for redistricting purposes.
The problem with this approach is two-fold, according to the report. Much of the administrative data on citizenship is inaccurate or out-of-date and matching this inaccurate data to Census data will introduce significant errors to the data states need to use to redistrict. As has become increasingly evident from recently revealed communications and studies by partisan operatives, this scheme is intended to eliminate whole populations of Latino and other immigrant communities from the census data used to draw new districts in 2021 and beyond. The racial and political repercussions are huge.
Continue reading this important report here.