Gerrymandering is electoral cheating, pure and simple, and it must be stopped. I saw firsthand the effects of gerrymandering in the 2017 Special Congressional Election. The power to stop it lies in the state legislature.
The fact that the Better Boundaries Initiative has gained so much traction shows that something is seriously wrong with our state legislature. The will of the people is not being accurately represented. The best way to fix this problem is to throw out the Utah Republican Party that made it.
Representative districts, whether on the State or Federal level, should follow three key principles: Compactness, Competitiveness, and Consistency.
- Compactness: Districts should be as compact as possible while maintaining equal populations. Long, snakelike district shapes are a telltale sign of a gerrymander.
- Competitiveness: Districts should be as competitive between the parties as possible, to ensure a healthy, vibrant democratic process.
- Consistency: Districts should be consistent with municipal and county boundaries. As much as possible, communities should be kept intact in a single district.