Virginia Republicans, Stealing The Senate?

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So the Virginia Republican Party has managed to reach "Mustache Twirlingly Evil" levels in just a single political move!

On Martin Luther King Jr. Day, while Senator Henry L. Marsh III (D-Richmond) left for washington to celebrate Obama's inauguration (I would like to point out the fact that Mr. Marsh was a Civil Rights lawyer that fought for the desegregation of schools) the Republican State Senators decided to force through a bill redistricting virginia to make it much more favorably Republican... And the Democratic party couldn't do a thing about it. While in the State Senate it's pretty much and even split between Democrats and Republicans, the fact that a single Democratic senator wasn't present at the time meant that the Republicans could force through the bill completely unimpeded.

The bill would redraw district lines, and would make a new Soutshide district concentrated with minority voters, while 8 districts, six of them held by Democrats, would be redrawn to favor more Republican voters. And not only did they pass this bill on Martin Luther King Jr. Day, when a Civil Rights Lawyer was missing, and designed it so that "minority voters" (like african americans) would be placed more heavily into a single district, but they adjourned in "Honor of Confederate General Stonewall Jackson"; honestly, all these guys have to do now is wear dark cloaks and call themselves "The League of Shadows" and they'll be fully embracing this "Evil Genius" phase they seem to be going through.

http://www.washingtonpost.com/local/va-politics/va-republicans-move-on-redistricting-draws-criticism/2013/01/22/f7645ee8-64b9-11e2-9e1b-07db1d2ccd5b_story.html

And now here's Stephen Colbert on the subject:

http://www.colbertnation.com/the-colbert-report-videos/423163/january-23-2013/alpha-dog-of-the-week---virginia-state-senate-republicans

So, anyone else think this is more like a dying "Noble Class" desperately attempting to hold onto it's last vestiges of power at all costs? I mean, honestly I don't see how some Republicans can defend these actions.

I hope this backfires but it should easily pass the house if we're just thinking about party lines. There is a solid majority of republicans in the house and governor will probably allow it to happen, the only thing that can stop it is the DOJ... which I think will happen. I mean like it says in the article the bill fits the definition of gerrymandering.

So if the DOJ does find it against the law those republican senators now have to contend with an angry minority block. The democratic swing of Virginia could have been brought back to the republican side if they had just waited for Obama to leave office but no, they want it all, fine now every republican that voted for the bill is going to be branded a racist. That'll probably increase voter turnout in state elections and maybe even midterms.

WOW, This may be the most evil political more I have seen in a long time, and that saying something.

To my fellow Virginians...

image

It appears that we're trying to compete with Texas and Arizona again to decide who is the most blatantly hard right wing in the nation again. I hate it when we get this urge....

I haven't checked sites like Fox News or similar sources, but I cannot see how anything like this could possibly be supported by any side. It is nothing more than blatantly evil, opportunistic, power-grabbing, and disgusting politics. It's the system at it's worst.

Also, Stewart > Colbert. ;)

Aren't they also trying to change how the state's electoral college votes are distributed?

harmonic:
Those evil bastards. Man, when will they learn? Surely this has never happened in politics. Let's spent 30 seconds on google.

http://www.propublica.org/article/in-california-democrats-redistricting-strategy-paid-off
http://chicago.cbslocal.com/2012/11/07/expert-redistricting-a-big-factor-in-democrats-wins-in-illinois/
http://www.in.gov/legislative/senate_democrats/redistricting.htm
http://www.dailykos.com/story/2012/11/19/1162777/-AZ-Redistricting-The-Limits-of-a-Democratic-Gerrymander
http://www.timesdispatch.com/news/state-regional/virginia-politics/general-assembly/schapiro-redistricting-ploy-empowers-out-of-power-democrats/article_58590608-4072-5440-b5fd-8c519dd11f93.html
http://articles.chicagotribune.com/2011-07-21/news/ct-met-illinois-redistricting-lawsuit20110721_1_map-districts-redrawing-legislative-boundaries

I'm tired of coming up with increasingly sarcastic and mod wrath worthy responses to this post, so I'll go with this.

Why? What are you trying to say with this? If it's that Democrats gerrymander more, good luck, you're going to have a hard time proving that. If it's that it's okay because the other guys do it, well, I think we all know how terrible an argument that is. If it's to look for people who are willing to damn one side while ignoring identical actions their side engages in, realize you're going to just piss people off so that you can stroke your own ego. And in any case, you're missing much of the reason behind the outrage here. How blatant it is and how obviously racist it is.

harmonic:
Those evil bastards. Man, when will they learn? Surely this has never happened in politics. Let's spent 30 seconds on google.

http://www.propublica.org/article/in-california-democrats-redistricting-strategy-paid-off
http://chicago.cbslocal.com/2012/11/07/expert-redistricting-a-big-factor-in-democrats-wins-in-illinois/
http://www.in.gov/legislative/senate_democrats/redistricting.htm
http://www.dailykos.com/story/2012/11/19/1162777/-AZ-Redistricting-The-Limits-of-a-Democratic-Gerrymander
http://www.timesdispatch.com/news/state-regional/virginia-politics/general-assembly/schapiro-redistricting-ploy-empowers-out-of-power-democrats/article_58590608-4072-5440-b5fd-8c519dd11f93.html
http://articles.chicagotribune.com/2011-07-21/news/ct-met-illinois-redistricting-lawsuit20110721_1_map-districts-redrawing-legislative-boundaries

Just because it's been done before, and by the opposite party, does not mean that it's a good thing to do. No matter who does it, it's an abominable thing. Besides, no one is denying that the democrats partake in these activities as well. Besides, as Revnak and others have said, the outrage is focused more on how this particular case was done, as well as why.

TKretts3:
I haven't checked sites like Fox News or similar sources, but I cannot see how anything like this could possibly be supported by any side. It is nothing more than blatantly evil, opportunistic, power-grabbing, and disgusting politics.

...and you can't see how some people would support that?

To many people, the reality of politics is unimportant - the only thing that matters is that the other side must not gain power!

SonicWaffle:

...and you can't see how some people would support that?

To many people, the reality of politics is unimportant - the only thing that matters is that the other side must not gain power!

Unfortunately, those people are frequently becoming commonplace here in America.

I think it was GunsmithKitten that mentioned a group of "gay Republicans" saying they wouldn't care if they were "thrown in concentration camps, just so long as the Liberals don't win."

Revnak:

harmonic:
Those evil bastards. Man, when will they learn? Surely this has never happened in politics. Let's spent 30 seconds on google.

http://www.propublica.org/article/in-california-democrats-redistricting-strategy-paid-off
http://chicago.cbslocal.com/2012/11/07/expert-redistricting-a-big-factor-in-democrats-wins-in-illinois/
http://www.in.gov/legislative/senate_democrats/redistricting.htm
http://www.dailykos.com/story/2012/11/19/1162777/-AZ-Redistricting-The-Limits-of-a-Democratic-Gerrymander
http://www.timesdispatch.com/news/state-regional/virginia-politics/general-assembly/schapiro-redistricting-ploy-empowers-out-of-power-democrats/article_58590608-4072-5440-b5fd-8c519dd11f93.html
http://articles.chicagotribune.com/2011-07-21/news/ct-met-illinois-redistricting-lawsuit20110721_1_map-districts-redrawing-legislative-boundaries

I'm tired of coming up with increasingly sarcastic and mod wrath worthy responses to this post, so I'll go with this.

Why? What are you trying to say with this? If it's that Democrats gerrymander more, good luck, you're going to have a hard time proving that. If it's that it's okay because the other guys do it, well, I think we all know how terrible an argument that is. If it's to look for people who are willing to damn one side while ignoring identical actions their side engages in, realize you're going to just piss people off so that you can stroke your own ego. And in any case, you're missing much of the reason behind the outrage here. How blatant it is and how obviously racist it is.

Personally, I wish we have a discussion on redistricting and gerrymandering without the effort to call the GOP evil (or the Dems for that matter on other sites). The way you frame the discussion matters and the fact that the entire post begins by calling a group of Republicans evil without saying what they did says it all. Let's have a discussion where gerrymandering (or whatever topic) is the principle issue of discussion and not the one side that did it yesterday and got into the news for it. Is that too much to ask?

Revnak:

I'm tired of coming up with increasingly sarcastic and mod wrath worthy responses to this post, so I'll go with this.

Why? What are you trying to say with this? If it's that Democrats gerrymander more, good luck, you're going to have a hard time proving that. If it's that it's okay because the other guys do it, well, I think we all know how terrible an argument that is. If it's to look for people who are willing to damn one side while ignoring identical actions their side engages in, realize you're going to just piss people off so that you can stroke your own ego. And in any case, you're missing much of the reason behind the outrage here. How blatant it is and how obviously racist it is.

I'm glad you were able to temper your response, as now it is just highly presumptive and paranoid.

This place is swimming with hypocrisy. You act like Democrats never do this. You act like Democrats never do anything. Just about every political scumbag move ignores party lines. This is why it is difficult to "reach across the isle", because these forums are oozing with blind faith in leftist ideology, and it doesn't matter what is done, only who does it. There is a legion of stereotypical party-line posters here, who have never, not once, demonstrated objectivity. This is why you invite posts like mine, because the saturday morning cartoon-like approach to politics is dangerous, juvenile, and exactly what the Machiavellian politician wants you to do.

wintercoat:

harmonic:
Those evil bastards. Man, when will they learn? Surely this has never happened in politics. Let's spent 30 seconds on google.

http://www.propublica.org/article/in-california-democrats-redistricting-strategy-paid-off
http://chicago.cbslocal.com/2012/11/07/expert-redistricting-a-big-factor-in-democrats-wins-in-illinois/
http://www.in.gov/legislative/senate_democrats/redistricting.htm
http://www.dailykos.com/story/2012/11/19/1162777/-AZ-Redistricting-The-Limits-of-a-Democratic-Gerrymander
http://www.timesdispatch.com/news/state-regional/virginia-politics/general-assembly/schapiro-redistricting-ploy-empowers-out-of-power-democrats/article_58590608-4072-5440-b5fd-8c519dd11f93.html
http://articles.chicagotribune.com/2011-07-21/news/ct-met-illinois-redistricting-lawsuit20110721_1_map-districts-redrawing-legislative-boundaries

Somebody using the "the other side does it too!" argument. Everybody take a shot! Or is it Republicans only, since he used "the Dems do it too!"? Or do the Democrats drink? Shit, the R&P drinking game is hard...

We REALLY need that game to be made. Though I don't think anybody would make it past the first page...

OT: Yes, Democrats do gerrymander. But the Democrats don't gerrymander while a black senator is out of town for MLK day to make more Republican sections with a black filled area while doing it in honor of Stonewall Jackson. There's gerrymandering and then there is evil.

TKretts3:
I haven't checked sites like Fox News or similar sources, but I cannot see how anything like this could possibly be supported by any side. It is nothing more than blatantly evil, opportunistic, power-grabbing, and disgusting politics. It's the system at it's worst.

Also, Stewart > Colbert. ;)

Ha, that's just the beginning, the GOP is trying to figure out how they can win the presidency even though they're doing pretty well at getting seats in the house. So they decided to change the rules of states dispersion of votes for president to basically allow areas with more property to have more control than more populous cities. And the reason it can be done is the gerrymandering republicans did when they won all those state office elections.

http://www.americanprogressaction.org/issues/civil-liberties/report/2013/01/24/50459/grand-theft-election/

Oh and btw, this isn't bullshit at all it's a real plan, but since it got the media's attention they've had republican governor's back down from it and it looks like it might only go into affect in one or two states if that.

harmonic:

This place is swimming with hypocrisy. You act like Democrats never do this. You act like Democrats never do anything.

...he said to one of the more notable conservative posters here.

Just because our opinion is different than yours doesn't mean we can't be objective. Maybe you're the one with the messed up perspective.

Edit: And before Revnak stabs me in the gall bladder, he's a libertarian poster, not conservative. Point stands.

recruit00:
Yes, Democrats do gerrymander. But the Democrats don't gerrymander while a black senator is out of town for MLK day to make more Republican sections with a black filled area while doing it in honor of Stonewall Jackson.

You do realize that it is only recently that Dems gained a majority of the votes from blacks right? There are plenty of incidents where Dems did a similar thing. Although most of your qualifiers are irrelevant.

There's gerrymandering and then there is evil.

How exactly is what they did more evil than any other incident of gerrymandering? A person left for some issue or another and the other side took advantage and passed a law that otherwise would not have been passed. Where is the great issue beyond the general problem with gerrymandering?

No defense for this. I'm with Revnak on this one. This is despicable and should not be defended from even those of the same party.

farson135:

How exactly is what they did more evil than any other incident of gerrymandering? A person left for some issue or another and the other side took advantage and passed a law that otherwise would not have been passed. Where is the great issue beyond the general problem with gerrymandering?

Farson, you know this is ridiculous. Is your problem with the term "evil"? Fine, then ignore that. Don't however try to downplay this.

Democracts do this ,Republicans do this and ladidada. It's a dishonest thing to do anyway.

LetalisK:

harmonic:

This place is swimming with hypocrisy. You act like Democrats never do this. You act like Democrats never do anything.

...he said to one of the more notable conservative posters here.

Just because our opinion is different than yours doesn't mean we can't be objective. Maybe you're the one with the messed up perspective.

It was only a matter of time before someone said this. You assume I have never criticized right-wing ideology. You're wrong.

Also, it's not an "opinion." I linked a bunch of articles relevant to gerrymandering. Facts.

harmonic:

LetalisK:

harmonic:

This place is swimming with hypocrisy. You act like Democrats never do this. You act like Democrats never do anything.

...he said to one of the more notable conservative posters here.

Just because our opinion is different than yours doesn't mean we can't be objective. Maybe you're the one with the messed up perspective.

It was only a matter of time before someone said this. You assume I have never criticized right-wing ideology. You're wrong.

Also, it's not an "opinion." I linked a bunch of articles relevant to gerrymandering. Facts.

...that's nice? I never said, or even implied, that you never criticized right-wing ideology nor did I say Democrats didn't gerrymander. I was responding to your accusations of our kool-aid drinking, as it were.

Witty Name Here:

SonicWaffle:

...and you can't see how some people would support that?

To many people, the reality of politics is unimportant - the only thing that matters is that the other side must not gain power!

Unfortunately, those people are frequently becoming commonplace here in America.

I think it was GunsmithKitten that mentioned a group of "gay Republicans" saying they wouldn't care if they were "thrown in concentration camps, just so long as the Liberals don't win."

Errr, I don't remember citing THAT statement. but then again, I do know gay conservatives who say they'd trust people willing to re-criminalize their sexuality ("I mean, even if they did want it re-criminalized, I'm sure they wouldn't treat us like animals") off of gayconservative.com

recruit00:

We REALLY need that game to be made. Though I don't think anybody would make it past the first page...

OT: Yes, Democrats do gerrymander. But the Democrats don't gerrymander while a black senator is out of town for MLK day to make more Republican sections with a black filled area while doing it in honor of Stonewall Jackson. There's gerrymandering and then there is evil.

No, really, what does make this more evil than other incidents of gerrymandering? The fact that black people are involved means you can de-facto play the race card? Oh, and this "they did it on MLK day" thing is basically superstition. An attempt at enhancing the drama of it all. Well, it is a pretty smart tactic, akin to "what about the children?!" in terms of grabbing the heartstrings of gullible people.

Stop with the bloody race-baiting already. It is such a tired, automatic, boring, stereotypical, child-like response. If there is any foul-play here, it is because of the content of character, not the color of skin. If one demographic votes one side literally over 90% of the time, as one does now, then that's behavior, not skin color. I'm not advocating for ANY manipulation of the political process, obviously. But you want to talk about drinking games? My liver is thankful there isn't one for Democrat race card plays.

Frission:
Farson, you know this is ridiculous. Is your problem with the term "evil"? Fine, then ignore that. Don't however try to downplay this.

I am putting it where it belongs. It is gerrymandering pure and simple. The only downplaying I am doing is taking the ridiculous hyperbole out of the equation.

Democracts do this ,Republicans do this and ladidada. It's a dishonest thing to do anyway.

Then let us talk about gerrymandering instead of the one side that got into the news most recently. That is all I ask.

farson135:

Then let us talk about gerrymandering instead of the one side that got into the news most recently. That is all I ask.

Gerrymandering is bad. Murder is bad. Embezzlement is bad. Whoever did it is bad for doing it and in this case I'm sorry to say, it was a very large group of people. What do you want me to say? That it was a few politicians, when in fact several senators participated in this? I don't like the fact that they did this. It's embarrassing that people have to resort to gerrymandering in such a blatant way. It's not hyperbole when people say that this is a disgrace.

What would you want us to say?

You can put things in context by saying that both sides may do it, but you have to acknowledge that this event was done and that it's dishonest. Not try to whitewash it or absolve the guilty parties (not accusing you specifically of doing that).

Frission:

farson135:

Then let us talk about gerrymandering instead of the one side that got into the news most recently. That is all I ask.

Gerrymandering is bad. Murder is bad. Embezzlement is bad. Whoever did it is bad for doing it and in this case I'm sorry to say, it was a very large group of people. What do you want me to say? That it was a few politicians, when in fact several senators participated in this? I don't like the fact that they did this. It's embarrassing that people have to resort to gerrymandering in such a blatant way. It's not hyperbole when people say that this is a disgrace.

What would you want us to say?

You can put things in context by saying that both sides may do it, but you have to acknowledge that this event was done and that it's dishonest. Not try to whitewash it or absolve the guilty parties (not accusing you specifically of doing that).

I want to discuss the issue and not the questionable morals of news' flavor of the hour. Or in other words-

"Personally, I wish we have a discussion on redistricting and gerrymandering without the effort to call the GOP evil (or the Dems for that matter on other sites). The way you frame the discussion matters and the fact that the entire post begins by calling a group of Republicans evil without saying what they did says it all. Let's have a discussion where gerrymandering (or whatever topic) is the principle issue of discussion and not the one side that did it yesterday and got into the news for it. Is that too much to ask?"

And it is hyperbole to call this event evil in comparison to other gerrymandering.

farson135:
[/snip

Hmm. It doesn't sit well with me. A part of me naturally thinks that it's an attempt to deflect attention of the issue, but what the hell? It's a gaming site, the damage and news is already out there.

How do you we should deal with Gerrymandering then? I think that there should be a way to call out dishonesty like that. There was a case in the case where Senators walked out and were then dragged back in by security. One was actually hiding under his desk.

Redistricting and gerrymandering is complicated. Normally redistricting sets lines appropriate to demographics. Gerrymandering is normally more partisan and deliberately manipulates lines to give a party a disproportionate amount of power. It has a negative effect on democratic accountability. However I suppose that just blocking attempts when they're without due cause is good enough to prevent gerrymandering. This event happened because the senators bypassed being blocked via a very childish way.

I'm just stating the obvious though.

What did you want to say about gerrymandering?

The thread was created not just to show an instance of gerrymandering, but to also illustrate the racist undertones in this particular incident. Handwaving it away with 'the other side does it too' or 'lets focus on gerrymandering as a whole, not on this particular case' won't fly. Harmonic and Farson, ya'll are largely missing the point here.

If ya'll want to talk about democrats doing shitty stuff, make a thread for it. If you want to talk about gerrymandering in a more broad context, make a post (or a whole thread) about it. But coming in with kneejerk reactions while decrying how others toe the party line is ironic, to say the least.

GunsmithKitten:

Errr, I don't remember citing THAT statement. but then again, I do know gay conservatives who say they'd trust people willing to re-criminalize their sexuality ("I mean, even if they did want it re-criminalized, I'm sure they wouldn't treat us like animals") off of gayconservative.com

I might've misquoted you then, sorry 'bout that.

Anyways, personally I think the best way to stop these "redistricting" issues is to make it so that you can't change the districts up until the senate is fully in attendance, that way we can avoid moments like this where politicians are sneaking behind each other's backs to skew votes in their favor.

Can someone tell me why you Americans doesn't like the idea of proportional election systems ?

It would solve all this crab overnight.

Of course proportional voting systems isn't perfect, you risk getting a very fragmented political landscape and a little less of "this is MY area's man/woman in congress". But overall this would be better than having this done every year, by who ever is in power.

Frission:
Hmm. It doesn't sit well with me. A part of me naturally thinks that it's an attempt to deflect attention of the issue, but what the hell? It's a gaming site, the damage and news is already out there.

You want the truth? I do not give a flying fuck what the party is. I don't care. Gerrymandering is a bigger issue than this partisan bullshit. What I want is for us to stop attacking the parties and deal with the fucking issue. I want gerrymandering to stop but as long as people keep demonizing each other there is no way for both sides to work on this.

What did you want to say about gerrymandering?

Personally I think that this is a case where technology should be integrated into our system. Set up a computer program that takes census data and builds a district bounded by road networks. If the voters believe it is appropriate there can be more factors. Such as, once again taking census data, make sure that a politician only has constituents from areas that have a similar population density (that , for example, Senators will not have a majority urban constituency and 10 farmers who he knows nothing about). Or just make it a completely random, but still continuous, district. That would mostly eliminate the human bias from district making and we would not have to worry about gerrymandering.

Jux:
The thread was created not just to show an instance of gerrymandering, but to also illustrate the racist undertones in this particular incident.

Racist undertones? Those undertones exist because you want to see them. I have a problem with this kind of hyperbole because it is completely unhelpful and it continues the trend of demonizing the other side (which helps nothing and makes things worse).

Handwaving it away with 'the other side does it too' or 'lets focus on gerrymandering as a whole, not on this particular case' won't fly. Harmonic and Farson, ya'll are largely missing the point here.

No, I see the point. You want to attack and demonize the other side. I think it is both unhelpful and in the end makes things worse. You want to do it? Fine. But do not expect me to go along with your bullshit. And I have no qualms about calling you out about it.

Gorr:
Can someone tell me why you Americans doesn't like the idea of proportional election systems ?

It would solve all this crab overnight.

Of course proportional voting systems isn't perfect, you risk getting a very fragmented political landscape and a little less of "this is MY area's man/woman in congress". But overall this would be better than having this done every year, by who ever is in power.

I would guess that most really haven't heard of it, and it's not like the currently elected government would be in favor of giving up power.

Gorr:
Can someone tell me why you Americans doesn't like the idea of proportional election systems ?

It would solve all this crab overnight.

Of course proportional voting systems isn't perfect, you risk getting a very fragmented political landscape and a little less of "this is MY area's man/woman in congress". But overall this would be better than having this done every year, by who ever is in power.

Because the overly simplistic "one man, one vote" makes sense to them and they like the idea of having a "representative" even when he doesn't need to do shit because of the way the districts are made up of (under the best of circumstances, the worst being that they have to play to the base so they don't get primaried)?

harmonic:

Revnak:

I'm tired of coming up with increasingly sarcastic and mod wrath worthy responses to this post, so I'll go with this.

Why? What are you trying to say with this? If it's that Democrats gerrymander more, good luck, you're going to have a hard time proving that. If it's that it's okay because the other guys do it, well, I think we all know how terrible an argument that is. If it's to look for people who are willing to damn one side while ignoring identical actions their side engages in, realize you're going to just piss people off so that you can stroke your own ego. And in any case, you're missing much of the reason behind the outrage here. How blatant it is and how obviously racist it is.

I'm glad you were able to temper your response, as now it is just highly presumptive and paranoid.

This place is swimming with hypocrisy. You act like Democrats never do this. You act like Democrats never do anything. Just about every political scumbag move ignores party lines. This is why it is difficult to "reach across the isle", because these forums are oozing with blind faith in leftist ideology, and it doesn't matter what is done, only who does it. There is a legion of stereotypical party-line posters here, who have never, not once, demonstrated objectivity. This is why you invite posts like mine, because the saturday morning cartoon-like approach to politics is dangerous, juvenile, and exactly what the Machiavellian politician wants you to do.

When? When are we acting like this? Because that honestly sounds a lot like projection. Yes, the Escapist is in general more to the left than to the right, but if you want to have a Democrats-are-stupid topic, then just create a topic and mention what bad things they have done. Don't post your response in the fashion you have done, which just seems like you want to shift the topic of discussion.
Really, you know what would have been preferable for you to say?
"Sigh. It's not the first time I've seen this. Here's a few links of other situations. It's sad no matter who does it'.

wintercoat:

Somebody using the "the other side does it too!" argument. Everybody take a shot! Or is it Republicans only, since he used "the Dems do it too!"? Or do the Democrats drink? Shit, the R&P drinking game is hard...

There's a drinking game with rules? I thought it was just drink until American politics don't seem so stupid.

More to the point, it's not necessarily the action that's the problem. It happens all the time. It's the way they went about it. They waited for an opponent to leave so they could force this bill through. They concentrated minority voters into a district, essentially saying fuck diversity, all we want and need is white people.

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