HOT BLAST: 'Packing and stacking' majority black districts in Alabama
Nov 06, 2013 | 1202 views |  0 comments | 16 16 recommendations | email to a friend | print
Annie Pearl Avery carries her voting rights march sign as she arrives with others at the Capitol in Montgomery on March 8. The group re-enacting the Selma-to-Montgomery voting rights march was completing its journey. (AP Photo/Dave Martin)
Annie Pearl Avery carries her voting rights march sign as she arrives with others at the Capitol in Montgomery on March 8. The group re-enacting the Selma-to-Montgomery voting rights march was completing its journey. (AP Photo/Dave Martin)
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Writing in The New York Times, Thomas Edsall takes a close look at how Alabama Republicans have drawn legislative districts to their advantage:

The Republicans who now control the legislatures and governorships in the deep South are using the landmark Voting Rights Act of 1965 to create a system of political apartheid.

No state demonstrates this better than Alabama, where in 2010 Republicans took over the State Senate and House for the first time since Reconstruction. This is a signal example of 
the decline of black power in the South.

Here's the big stat:

 

Before the 2010 election, there were 60 Democrats in the Alabama State House, 34 of them white, 26 black. Now, there are 36 Democrats, 26 of them black, 10 of them white. In the State Senate, the number of Democrats fell from 20 – 13 white, 7 black – to 11 Democrats, 4 white, 7 black.

Once Alabama Republicans gained control of the levers of power, they wasted no time using the results of the 2010 Census to reinforce their position of dominance. Newly drawn lines further corralled black voters into legislative districts with large African-American majorities, a tactic political professionals call “packing and stacking.” Redrawn district lines minimize the potential of coalitions between a minority of white voters and a solid core of black voters. Under these circumstances, white Republican voting blocs remain dominant.

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