Previewing Gill v. Whitford and Benisek v. Lamone
Jake Whitaker
1

I haven’t read up on Benisek v. Lamone thusfar (I guess I should!) so I won’t comment on that case but I don’t see how the efficiency gap promoted in Gill gets the stamp of approval from the Supreme Court.

They suggested an arbitrary 7 percentage point efficiency gap standard in Gill as the basis for determining if partisan gerrymandering exists or not. There is no real reason why 7 is a better number than 5 or 10. It’s just the number they plucked out of the air.

Their measurement standard also has a few built in assumptions that have little basis in reality. Why did they only look at how people voted in House races? And why did they completely ignore the incumbency factor?

All of their calculations assume that if someone voted for a candidate from party X, they would have voted for any candidate from party X that had been on the ballot. But that doesn’t hold water.

People cross over party lines to vote and we have several States where people voted for someone from Party X for their House seat but Party Y for their Governor or Senator.

The efficiency gap assumes that people only vote by political party and pushes to have districts setup on that basis while ignoring who the actual candidates running are.

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