Granderson: Democratic victories in Michigan show the way to 2024
posted at 3:21 pm on March 25, 2014 by Allahpundit
Democrats won big in Michigan in Tuesday’s election, and they’re going to build on their gains in November. Michigan was one of 13 states where Democrats won a majority, and the state’s voters turned out in mass to propel Obama to re-election in November. As the liberal-leaning Midwest descends into the next round of redistricting — the same redistricting process that will determine the congressional map next year — there are good reasons to believe that the electoral map will look a lot like Michigan’s.
In general, states with purple electorates are more likely to have competitive congressional elections, and there’s reason to believe that Michigan’s 2018 map won’t be redrawn the same way as the one that’s drawn for this decade. The same is true, for example, of Pennsylvania, the New York, New Jersey, and Maine states. And I’d be willing to bet that, if the map were redrawn in New York on party-line votes, Democratic voters would have far more electoral power in the state than they do under the current plan, which gives Republicans more than 1.5 times as many seats in the House of Representatives. (On the other hand, Pennsylvania’s congressional map is more polarized, which means that the state that used to be redder may have become even more Democratic, thanks to redistricting and party-line voting.)
What’s more, redistricting often doesn’t lead to large changes in the electoral picture for a state: The map that emerges isn’t necessarily static. “Redistricting is an ongoing decision-making process,” says Matt Bennett, a political scientist at the University of Florida. “The fact of the matter is, Michigan will be redistricted for 20 years. I want you to understand that.” The point, Bennett says, is to try to predict how changes won’t be made, and, when changes do take place, to plan for them. In