I can’t count the number of social media posts and news articles that focus on the political divide of this country – and even our small area of Chester County. What I can count is how often parts of Chester County are sliced and diced to create election districts, from state representatives and senators to our Congressional representatives. How is this possible?
It’s called gerrymandering: the practice of dividing a geographic area in a way that gives advantage to one party or group in an election. It has been around since 1812 and both parties have used it, depending upon which one is in power to draw district lines. One of the biggest problems with gerrymandering is that it drastically reduces the motivation for politicians to cross party lines and collaborate.
The lines will be redrawn again in 2020 with the same process unless the citizens of Pennsylvania say enough is enough. It is a complicated issue but we can do this. On March 28, 7 p.m., at Avon Grove High School, Lawrence Husick of Fair Districts PA will explain gerrymandering, why it leads to the political divide and current legislation proposed that would take districting out of political party hands and put it back into the hands of voters!