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FREQUENTLY ASKED QUESTIONS
What is gerrymandering?
Gerrymandering is the manipulation of these political district boundaries as to favor one party, race, or group over another. It is a deliberate attempt to increase the likelihood of a particular result.
How does the process of drawing district lines work in Indiana?
Currently, Indiana’s redistricting process gives the Indiana State legislature’s majority party the power to draw the district lines. The only requirements for each district are that all parts be contiguous (connected) and that it be nearly equal in population to every other district of its type.
This means that the very politicians that represent us in state government are deciding what each district looks like and who lives in them, with only minimal enforceable guidelines. They are actually picking which voters live in their districts and which don’t – and they are using increasingly sophisticated data and computer software to do so.
Is Indiana gerrymandered?
Using the most recent court-approved measure of gerrymandering, referred to as the “efficiency gap,” we contend that yes, Indiana’s state legislative districts are gerrymandered.
On the state legislative level, Republicans received ~58% of the votes in Indiana in the 2016 elections. Yet, they hold 82% of the State Senate seats and 70% of the State House seats. Interestingly enough, Republicans also controlled the process that drew these district lines in 2010.
How can this be fixed?
CFFE believes the answer to that question lies with independent redistricting. In short, independent redistricting is when somebody other than the legislature draws the legislative districts. Some states have already established independent redistricting commissions to ensure that elections remain competitive and to ensure that voters are choosing their politicians rather than politicians choosing their voters. We think it’s time Indiana does the same.
BUT WAIT, THERE'S MORE
Want to know more about gerrymandering in Indiana? Click below and learn about how to explain gerrymandering to your friends and family and how we can work together to change the system.