Bret Hrbek

hrbek@politicalusa.com


 

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The Democratic Gerrymander is Over
By Bret Hrbek

11/29/2000

See today's other column:  White House Under Siege by Dorothy Anne Seese

This election is now over. 

Republicans barely kept control of the Senate.  Republicans kept control of
the House of Representatives.  (Thank God.  Can you actually image Speaker
Gephardt?  That's worse than President Gore.)  And Governor George W. Bush
is now the president-elect of the United States of America.

And the world will be better for it.

Yet, it's not over.  This national nightmare continues on and on and on and
on.  It's the Energizer Bunny of presidential elections.

As much as I want this to end and let W and Dick Cheney take the helm of
this great country, I know that it will drag on because Vice President
Albert Gore, Jr. cannot let go of his quest for the presidency.  If he gives
up he will feel that he has let his late father down.  In some ways I feel
sorry for him......Not really.

So he will use every tactic - legal or illegal, ethical or unethical - to steal
this election.  He has gone so far as to begin casting votes instead of
counting them.  Did he learn that trick from the Daley family?  Or as the
disciple of Bill & Hillary?

Although optimistic, I'm not positive that Gore won't be able to pull off
the biggest heist in American history.  Clinton, you thought you were good
by selling state secrets?  That's peanuts compared to stealing the
presidency of the United States.  And now the student becomes the master.

Despite this power play for the White House, there is another dynamic that I
think many in the press and public are missing.  That's the silent watchers
on the Left and Right hoping that the other guy will win. 

Republicans for Gore?  Democrats for Bush?  Am I crazy?  No.  The Democrats
for Bush crowd see it as their one-way ticket to power in 2002.  The
Republicans for Gore see Al as their only way to save the sinking Titanic.

I'm not so pessimistic.  Although the party in power typically losses seats 
in Congress during the mid-term elections, I'm not sure that will take place 
this time around.  This is the first time in a generation (and probably longer) 
that Republicans will have the ability to draw the lines that shape congressional 
districts.  Because of the hard work and foresight of so many people, 
Republicans fully control the redistricting process in enough states to finally 
accurately reflect the states' populations and viewpoints.

No more Democratic gerrymandering.  Finally we can draw districts that don't
look like ink blots in a shrink's office.

From my rough estimations, Republicans have complete control over drawing
170 House districts.  Democrats have complete control over 126 districts,
and the remaining 139 seats are governed by states where competing parties
control the governorship and/or legislative chambers.

That's good news.  During the 1990 redistricting, Republicans completely
controlled drawing about five congressional districts.  This, of course, is
no guarantee to victory, but a major leap forward.  And not all Republicans
are good Republicans.  Don't forget, we still have the Chris Shays and
Connie Morellas in the GOP.  When you're working with states like
Connecticut, you take what you can get.

So you see why the Democrats are so desperate to win the White House.  They
know that it's the only key left to power for a generation.  They won't get
Congress back in 2002 and without Gore in the White House they lose the
ability to appoint judges who legislate from the bench.  (Ex. Florida
Supreme Court)

But what about the Rich Man's Club in the Upper House?

Republicans should not become frustrated by the losses in the Senate.  These
were natural corrections from the 1994 Republican Revolution.  Many of those
who lost their bids for re-election probably shouldn't have been
representing that state to begin with.  How can Minnesota actually send Paul
Wellstone and Rod Grams to the Senate and then elect Jesse Ventura as
governor?  Something had to give. 

As for the other seats, Republicans had bad candidates.  Could you really
have voted for Bill McCollum?  I'm not even sure if his own mother could.
The man looks like he should be tattling on the cool kids not articulating
sound conservative political philosophy in the Senate Chamber and inspiring
action.

Once again, it's morning in America.  W should pull this out and have a good
four-year run.  He may even turn out to be, dare I say it?, effective,
charming and a great president.  We'll just have to wait until dawn to see.

See today's other column:  White House Under Siege by Dorothy Anne Seese

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Bret Hrbek, 2000

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View expressed are those of the author and do not necessarily reflect those of Political USA.


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