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Redistricting Screws Black Folks in Seattle

Our leaders have  used a soupcon of melanin to flavor a soup made of grits, dashi, menudo and matzoh balls.

The redrawn 9th Congressional District is “only” 49.67% non-Hispanic white. However, it already has a well-entrenched incumbent in Adam Smith. And, as I noted yesterday, the voters of the CD will be majority non-Hispanic white. “Very quick thoughts on (Washington’s) new Congressional Districts, North in Seattle on HorsesAss

I saw this very differently … perhaps because I am not a “non Hispanic white?”  When I get a chance I’ll ask North what my double negative makes me, but ……  in the mean time ….. . the “non Hispanic white” folks   on the redistricting commission have pulled off a miracle!   Our leaders have  used a soupcon of melanin to flavor a soup made of grits, dashi and matzoh balls.

The obvious effect is to deprive the African American community of Seattle of representation by submerging it into the affluence of of Mercer Island and the Bellevue Mall.  Adam Smith is a great guy, but how well can he deal with the the problems of Rainier Beach, White Center and Central District poverty when his “majority minority” district is full of vocal, well off affluent Eastsiders?  Representative Smith also gets to represent our two big malls and the airport.  I suppose by some forms of math, the malls and the airport don’t vote.  By my math, Bellevue Mall plus South Center Mall, plus SeaTac equals lots of campaign bucks.

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Why did they do this?  It looks like the good folks on the Commission were very worried about  job retention.   The Commission built five Democratic Districts  (2nd (Larsen), 6th (Dicks), 7th (McDermott), 9th (Smith), 10th (Thurston County-based, no incumbent).  The Xmas gift for the Republicans was only a a bit less generous.Doc Hastings gets to keep his barony in the 4th, McMorris Rodgers keeps the 5th ), and  Jaime Herrera Beutler (our state’s version of  Marco Rubio)  is likely to keep her seat in the 3rd.   The excision of Bellevue and Mercer Island from Sheriff Reichert’s domains in the 8th  is odd, they cut off his money belt.  What is left, though,  seems like a well tailored sheriff’s uniform that should keep him toasty as he rides his hoss across the foothills where he first got his fame as a lawman.  He should be fine as long as his money keeps coming from Bellevue.

Bottom line?  The Central District was treated badly … used as filler to build a District for Adam Smith.


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