JONATHAN R. CERVAS

©2018 by Jonathan R. Cervas.

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Cervas, Jonathan R. & Bernard Grofman. (Revise and Resubmit). "Tools for Identifying Partisan Gerrymandering (PA)". Political Geography. undefined: -, pg. 1.

Tools for Identifying Partisan Gerrymandering (PA)

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Abstract:

In League of Women Voters v. Commonwealth of Pennsylvania (2018) the Pennsylvania Supreme Court struck down as a “severe and durable” partisan gerrymander the congressional map drawn by Republicans in 2011 and used in elections from 2012-2016.  It did so entirely on state law grounds after a three-judge federal court had rejected issuing a preliminary injunction against the plan. After Pennsylvania failed to enact a lawful remedy plan of its own (due to total disagreement as to how to proceed between the newly elected Democratic governor and the still Republican-controlled legislature), the Court then ordered into place for the 2018 election a map of its own drawn for it by a court-appointed consultant. In a split court, the Court map was endorsed only by judges with Democratic affiliations. Here we compare and contrast the 2011 and 2018 maps in terms of a variety of proposed metrics for detecting partisan gerrymandering. For further comparison purposes, we examine six proposed remedy plans. These include the remedy map proposed by the Republican legislators and that proposed by the Democratic governor, along with four other maps drawn conforming either entirely or substantially to what are often referred to as ``good government” standards, and with no election outcome or party registration data used in the creation of three of them. We argue that the 2011 map was a blatant and undisguised pro-Republican gerrymander, while the 2018 remedy map proposed by Republican legislators was a covert gerrymander (what we refer to as a stealth gerrymander); but that, as we would expect, the 2018 court-drawn map cannot be classified as a gerrymander.

Keywords

gerrymandering

Cervas, Jonathan R. & Bernard Grofman

Political Geography