Gerrymandering In The United States Government

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A democracy is a form of government where the people rule directly on everything that has an effect on their everyday lives. In a democracy the government’s power is from the people and it relies on them to use that power. Citizen’s rights to the decisions made by the government can be handled directly by entering their positions personally or by representatives. Since government decisions are not made by the majority vote except for in a small amount of all lawmaking, the United States is not a direct democracy. The United States contains elements of a democracy and a republic. A republic is a government where the people rule indirectly through elected officials. Since the United States combines these two forms of government, it is generally…show more content…
One example would be the practice of gerrymandering. Gerrymandering is the process of drawing district lines and shaping boundaries to benefit one group or another. This practice is the most effective form of manipulating elections short of outright fraud, and it is technically illegal but hard to prove. Gerrymandering takes away the power of a person’s vote and discourages them to cast a ballot. Since the state legislature is controlled by a single party, that party attempts to draw district lines to help them win. There are different types of gerrymandering techniques. Packing is a strategy that aims to concentrate as many voters of one type into a single electoral district to reduce their influence in other districts. The party that is in control try’s to force the opposing party into a few districts so that their say has very little effect on the election. Another gerrymandering technique is called cracking. This strategy involves spreading out voters of a particular type among many districts in order to deny them a sufficiently large voting bloc in any particular district. In cracking the party moves the opposing party so that they will not have the majority vote in any district. The fact that gerrymandering happens and is not stopped proves that non-democratic practices take place in the…show more content…
Several states try to allow citizens to make decisions without elected officials. Referendums, initiatives, and sunshine laws are all ways that the states incorporate the public into lawmaking and government decisions. However, the United States is not a direct democracy because it includes elements of a republic. The government has more than five hundred thousand elected officials that answer to the public. The constitutional framers believed that the majority in a direct democracy would get carried away and make decisions that only benefit themselves. That is why the government was set up to be able to check the power of the majority. Because the government is a mixed system that combines a democracy and a republic, it is not considered a direct
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