May 06, 2003
OK, guys, joke's over
I've decided that the neverending supply of proposed redistricting maps is just a joke being played on gullible Democrats like me, designed to distract us from other legislation that the Lege is currently considering (such as this bill to outlaw pubic hair , as noted by Greg Morrow). There doesn't seem to be any other logical explanation for these things, which are clearly inspired by Jackson Pollack.
I'll say this: If any State Senate Democrats sell out on this for any reason and allow a redistricting bill to pass, the national party ought to hunt them down like rats in a sewer. My God, this latest map puts me in John frigging Culberson's district. I haven't been "represented" by a Congressional Republican since I moved to Montrose in 1989, and I have no desire to start now.
By the way, notice how Sheila Jackson Lee's district pokes into Fort Bend County? They'd give her Precinct 2, which is predominantly black, presumably to ensure that the 22nd CD remains sufficiently white to keep electing Tom DeLay. Lovely.
I'm going to take a deep breath and stop worrying about this. It's just not going to happen.
 - No, that isn't really what this bill does. I'm just making with the funny. Go read it for yourself.
UPDATE: Travis County's fate under this latest proposal is equally ridiculous. Via the Burnt Orange Report.
Posted by Charles Kuffner on May 06, 2003 to Killer D's
Damn restricting yobbos would move me from Sheila Jackson Lee's district to the Woodlands district. Oh, yeah. That guy'll be responsive to my legislative concerns.
Elbridge DeLay strikes again! Can't he go back to screwing things up on a national level?
Is the map up somewhere? The Comical, as usual, didn't provide a link.
This is such a blatant Gerrymander. Harris county (based on 2001 population estimates) could support five reps without going outside the county. Instead, we are part of districts stretching from Austin to Port Arthur.
Charles M - Yes, if you go to the Chron link, there's a box labelled "Resources" near the top of the story, and it's got a link that brings up a popup window with the map. Here's a direct link to the map.
There is supposed to be a final committee hearing tonight on this down at the capitol after adjournment. (At or about 6 p.m.)
The only way that redistricting would pass the Senate is if it sufficiently bribed Sen. Lucio and keep all the Republicans in the Senate on board. I just don't see it happening (although one of the South Texas districts looks to be fairly Lucio-friendly).
So I'd have to agree with you that this is probably a distraction, but the consequences of it being serious are so... um... serious that it's worth worrying about.
I get a chuckle everytime the GOP says that it is doing this out of fairness. Ha! Texas is NO MORE than 60-40 Republican-Democrat. Under a "fair" distribution of seats, that would leave the Republicans with no more than 19 seats, not the 20 they're angling for. More reasonably though the state is probably closer to about 55-45 (let's be honest, the 2002 electorate was not representative of all Texans -- and the worst we did was still 39 percent with Sanchez, and 48 percent with Sharp). Split evenly that would give the Republicans about 17 or 18 seats, meaning that the delegation would be "off" by just as much if the Republicans got their map as it is now.
But anyway, Jackson Pollack - good analogy. I honestly don't know how a district running from Austin to New Mexico (or from East Austin to Old Mexico, or the reconfigured 2nd district, which looks like a swastika) could be considered anything but blatant gerrymandering. It's very disturbing to think that anyone might believe this was a serious attempt at fairness.