Monday, April 27, 2009

Time to Reverse Gerrymander CA-36

As the Jane Harman wiretap mini-scandal fades to a muddled gray amid allegations and counter allegations, it's clear that Harman's 36th Congressional District is not as homogeneously stable as CA legislators anticipated when they gerrymandered it to a bright sky blue during the Bush years. 

In an effort to consolidate local Dem votes and protect incumbents of both parties, consultant Michael Berman(D) partitioned the area during the great redistricting orgy of 2001 to artificially join large parts of ultra-progressive Venice and union-heavy, Catholic San Pedro - absurdly amputating Harman's longtime hometown on the Palos Verdes Peninsula in the process. Harman moved to Venice while her more Republican-tolerant constituents on the Hill were pushed into Dana Rohrabacher's (R) 46th district serving North Orange County.

With the Dems safely in power, the wiretap incident has exposed the fissures in the contrived amalgam of the aerospace-heavy South Bay and the anti-war Westside as Harman's pro-Israel, pro-defense industry, pro-wiretapping, Blue Dog Dem politics grate on the nerves of the residents of CA-36's more progressive districts. Ironically, Harmon's 2006 and 2008 primary challenger, teacher Marcy Winograd, had to move from her Pacific Palisades home into a Marina del Rey apartment to oppose Harman's pro-war policies in the name of the "grassroots." In light of recent events, Winograd is currently mulling a second run.

I say take advantage of the upcoming Census to rezone the area to the contiguous South Bay. We would all be happier.

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