So the GOP won its case to keep the current congressional maps
It’s not exactly a victory for anyone, let alone ordinary people.
But one thing is not disputed. We have Congressional districts drawn along racial lines. And both parties in Pennsylvania have a long and sordid history of altering the lines of jurisdiction based on the skin tones of the folks who fall on one side of that line or the other.
Let’s examine this map of the PA-1 Congressional district, which represents Philadelphia’s River Wards and over the years has increasingly added more and more residents from Delaware County.
This is Congressman Bob Brady‘s congressional district. The reason for each change in its shape is simple: it grew arms and legs and hugs the Delaware River to kick out as many black people as possible from it.
It’s also no surprise that Congressman Brady is currently under an FBI probe in his involvement in kicking out a black challenger to his congressional seat, by paying him off.
Incidentally, this person also happens to be the leader of the Democratic City Committee and the region’s top Democrat. Few people like to discuss this in-depth or dwell on it.
Should Republicans have heeded Bob Brady’s requests over the last 30 years to keep black people out of his district so he would face weak challengers? I argue they shouldn’t have. But by granting Brady’s requests to make his seat safer for himself, that usually comes with some strings attached (i.e. not challenging the borders of other districts).
This is different than just Republican vs. Democrat map-drawing. The PA-1 district has never in 40 years ever been at risk of falling into the hands of Republicans no matter what way the map is drawn.
It’s been gerrymandered to protect one person’s career.
Democrats could have fixed this themselves. And in 2 years time they can unfuckify this seat on their own by requesting it be a compact district.