November's general election is still more than a month away, but many races were already decided months ago.
That's due to gerrymandering which is the process where one political party can dice up the legislative districts in way that's advantageous to them. One prime example is the snake-like 12th congressional district, which winds its way from Greensboro down to Mecklenburg County. According to an analysis by the Washington Post's Wonkblog, North Carolina is one of the most gerrymandered states.
WFDD's Paul Garber spoke with Jane Pinsky, director of the nonpartisan group North Carolina Coalition for Lobbying and Government Reform. She says gerrymandering has to stop because it hurts democracy.
"In the long run, the citizens in the district are the losers," says Pinsky. "It's even more dangerous now because computers let us draw maps in the most minute of details. With a computer I can figure out which two houses I need to split a district between because I have voting patterns, voting records and voting registration."
Pinsky says because they live in one-sided districts, many politicians no longer have to work to be re-elected. She offers some suggestions about how the state's voter maps can be fixed, and what citizens can do to encourage change.