Friday letter: Donovan gerrymandered out of CD3 |

Friday letter: Donovan gerrymandered out of CD3

Gerrymandered out of the race

Vail’s Democratic State Senator, Kerry Donovan, was planning to run against Third District Republican Congressman Lauren Boebert in next year’s election. A popular and productive state legislator, Donovan figured to give Boebert a run for her money. All that came crashing down when the Colorado Independent Redistricting Commission moved Donovan’s home county, Eagle County, out of CD3 and into CD2.

Donovan could run for the CD3 seat, but her chance of winning as an outsider would be slim. Rep. Joe Neguse presides in CD2, and he’s just as popular and productive at the federal level as Donovan is at the state level, so that’d be a long shot, too.

What happened to Donovan is she got gerrymandered in response to a charge of gerrymandering. A preliminary map from the redistricting commission showed the northern half of CD3 shifted to CD2.

This brought the ire and charges of gerrymandering from CD3 Republicans, including the Garfield County commissioners, who claimed it was a direct effort to get rid of Boebert, considered by many to be a statewide embarrassment.

So, the commission put the district back together, moving just Eagle and Routt counties to CD2. Routt County is the home of previous Democratic challenger Diane Mitsch Bush and figures to be a county where the Dems have a good chance. As it stands, CD3 will be a cakewalk for Boebert.

As it is most commonly practiced, gerrymandering is where you group a large number of your opponent’s supporters into one or a few districts, then disperse the remainder thinly over the majority. That way the opposing party controls as few districts as possible.

Just like Colorado, redistricting in Texas was necessitated by additional House seats called for by the 2020 census. Texas is 41% Latino and 42% Anglo. Guess how many districts will be Latino controlled. Zero.

Voter’s rights legislation currently blocked by U.S. Senate Republicans would limit gerrymandering. Colorado needs that. The current map would give our congressional representation a 4-4 split and that doesn’t reflect the political realities in a state that has a Democratic trifecta in state government and two Democratic U.S. senators.            

Fred Malo Jr.


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