How Utah Republicans are using severe gerrymandering to ‘bludgeon the minority party’: report

How Utah Republicans are using severe gerrymandering to ‘bludgeon the minority party’: report

Utah continues to be the reddest of the southwestern states: former President Donald Trump carried Utah by 21% in the 2020 election compared to 6% in Texas. Nonetheless, President Joe Biden did carry Utah's Salt Lake County by 10%. But reporter Bryan Schott, in an article published by the Salt Lake Tribune on November 17, explains how partisan gerrymandering could make Utah even more unfavorable to Democrats.

Schott explains, "It's difficult to argue the new congressional maps passed by the Utah Legislature aren't gerrymandered. They slice up Salt Lake County into four pieces, a process known as 'cracking.' It's not hard to understand why. Democrat Joe Biden carried Salt Lake County by just over 10 points over Republican Donald Trump."

The Tribune reporter goes on to point out the difference between what an independent commission had in mind for congressional districts in Utah and what Republicans in the Utah State Legislature had in mind.

"The congressional map proposed by the independent redistricting commission would have created one competitive district out of the four, giving a Democrat a reasonable chance of winning," Schott notes. "Instead, lawmakers ignored those maps in favor of their own, which overwhelmingly favored Republicans. Now, we're starting to get an idea of just how favorable the new congressional maps are for the GOP."

READ: A growing threat is emerging from the theocratic wing of the GOP — but many liberals are missing it

Commenting on GOP redistricting in Utah, the Cook Political Report's David Wasserman tweeted:

Schott quotes Wasserman as saying, "Utah is Exhibit A of how one-party states can use redistricting as a weapon to bludgeon the minority party."

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