WNYC’S Fred Mogul takes a long look at redistricting in New York State, the Senate GOP practice of splitting and cracking districts and the possible impact of the pending Gil v. Whitford case before the U.S. Supreme Court.
From the article:
“quirks in the state constitution have helped produce a unique legal and political tradition basically enshrining gerrymandering as a way of life. They say it’s particularly evident in the State Senate, where “the requirement that districts be compact is ignored,” “county boundaries are virtually erased as the basis for drawing districts,” and politically conservative rural areas are milked for more districts than politically liberal metropolitan districts.
(Todd) Breitbart and (Jeff) Wice highlight two other GOP gerrymandering techniques in common usage in the New York City region: the splitting (or “cracking”) of minority communities on Long Island, to dilute their vote; and the clustering (or “packing”) of minority communities in the Bronx and southern Westchester, to carve out an oddly shaped district specifically for largely white communities.
The upshot of all this is that Republicans have clung to power in the Senate, despite shrinking enrollment statewide.”