Summer Sale Extended! Get unlimited digital access for 13 weeks for $13.
Readers Respond
News Opinion Readers Respond

Partisan redistricting undermines representative democracy [Letter]

I read with interest the recent article "Carroll conservatives clash with Van Hollen" (Nov. 12). I could readily relate to Carroll County Republican Bill Schroeder's statement — "We have nothing in common with Montgomery County — absolutely nothing" — concerning his representative, Chris Van Hollen, a Democrat who lives in and primarily represents Montgomery Co. And, according to the article, that county "accounts for most of the district's population."

I live in Howard County and am represented by Elijah Cummings who also represents much of Baltimore City. I'm in the same boat. Over the years, the repeated redistricting referred to in the article has served the purpose for which it was intended: to divide Republican voters. This ensured that previously conservative districts, represented by conservative representatives, were now diluted to make a new district with a Democratic majority.

Apparently Mr. Van Hollen, along with other Democratic colleagues, have greatly benefited from this. It's a matter of what's best for advancing the party agenda, not necessarily what's best for fulfilling the needs and desires of the actual people who are being represented. I was previously a registered Democrat, am now a registered Republican and am on my way to becoming a registered independent. There's no doubt in my mind that similar methods have been used by the Republican Party in other jurisdictions to attain or maintain their majority.

It doesn't matter to me who does it. The bottom line is, it's cheating and it is the antithesis of what a representative democracy is meant to be. Obviously, our congressmen, either on a state or national level, see no problem with this so, for me, the real problem lies therein.

Susan M. Lancelotta, Sykesville

-
To respond to this letter, send an email to talkback@baltimoresun.com. Please include your name and contact information.

Copyright © 2015, The Baltimore Sun
Related Content
  • Redistricting reform matters to middle class families

    Redistricting reform matters to middle class families

    As one who successfully challenged Gov. Parris N. Glendening's blatantly political legislative redistricting plan in court in 2002 and the following year introduced legislation to create a gubernatorial task force to reform our redistricting process, I was pleased to see that Gov. Larry Hogan has...

  • Redistricting reform: Hogan makes good on his promise

    Redistricting reform: Hogan makes good on his promise

    Gov. Larry Hogan took an important step toward fulfilling one of the most important promises of his campaign today by naming a commission to come up with recommendations to reform the process by which Maryland redraws congressional and legislative district maps. Granted, he made a lot of important...

  • Why should redistricting be so complicated?

    Why should redistricting be so complicated?

    Surely by virtue of the U.S. Postal Service and/or past census data we much know the population of every ZIP code in the country. (If not, we could probably buy it from Amazon or UPS). So why not just go from east to west, or west to east, one ZIP code at a time until the proper population for...

  • Hogan's right about one thing: Md. district lines are ridiculous

    Hogan's right about one thing: Md. district lines are ridiculous

    Gov. Larry Hogan's proposal for a commission approach to redistricting is the best thing I've heard coming out of the governor's office since he took office ("Hogan: Redraw district lines," Aug. 7). I wish our politicians would be more interested in being public servants and less concerned about...

  • Straddling the city-county divide

    Straddling the city-county divide

    In a recent editorial you noted that Lt. Gov. Anthony G. Brown, who lives in Prince George's County, followed the traditional formula of appealing to the Baltimore region by choosing Howard County Executive Ken Ulman as his running mate ("Twin controversies for Gansler," Oct. 14).

  • The business case for redistricting reform

    The business case for redistricting reform

    Our view: Sure, CEOs want lower taxes, but they're also interested in good government

Comments
Loading
75°