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December 2, 2014

Jonathan Tobin: Defending the Right to a Jewish State

Heather Hale: Compliment your kids without giving them big heads

Megan Shauri: 10 ways you are ruining your own happiness

Carolyn Bigda: 8 Best Dividend Stocks for 2015

Kiplinger's Personal Finance editors: 7 Things You Didn't Know About Paying Off Student Loans

Samantha Olson: The Crucial Mistake 55% Of Parents Are Making At Their Baby's Bedtime

Densie Well, Ph.D., R.D. Open your eyes to yellow vegetables

The Kosher Gourmet by Megan Gordon With its colorful cache of purples and oranges and reds, COLLARD GREEN SLAW is a marvelous mood booster --- not to mention just downright delish
April 18, 2014

Rabbi Yonason Goldson: Clarifying one of the greatest philosophical conundrums in theology

Caroline B. Glick: The disappearance of US will

Megan Wallgren: 10 things I've learned from my teenagers

Lizette Borreli: Green Tea Boosts Brain Power, May Help Treat Dementia

John Ericson: Trying hard to be 'positive' but never succeeding? Blame Your Brain

The Kosher Gourmet by Julie Rothman Almondy, flourless torta del re (Italian king's cake), has royal roots, is simple to make, . . . but devour it because it's simply delicious

April 14, 2014

Rabbi Dr Naftali Brawer: Passover frees us from the tyranny of time

Greg Crosby: Passing Over Religion

Eric Schulzke: First degree: How America really recovered from a murder epidemic

Georgia Lee: When love is not enough: Teaching your kids about the realities of adult relationships

Cameron Huddleston: Freebies for Your Lawn and Garden

Gordon Pape: How you can tell if your financial adviser is setting you up for potential ruin

Dana Dovey: Up to 500,000 people die each year from hepatitis C-related liver disease. New Treatment Has Over 90% Success Rate

Justin Caba: Eating Watermelon Can Help Control High Blood Pressure

The Kosher Gourmet by Joshua E. London and Lou Marmon Don't dare pass over these Pesach picks for Manischewitz!

April 11, 2014

Rabbi Hillel Goldberg: Silence is much more than golden

Caroline B. Glick: Forgetting freedom at Passover

Susan Swann: How to value a child for who he is, not just what he does

Cameron Huddleston: 7 Financial Tasks You Should Tackle Right Now

Sandra Block and Lisa Gerstner: How to Profit From Your Passion

Susan Scutti: A Simple Blood Test Might Soon Diagnose Cancer

Chris Weller: Have A Slow Metabolism? Let Science Speed It Up For You

The Kosher Gourmet by Diane Rossen Worthington Whitefish Terrine: A French take on gefilte fish

April 9, 2014

Jonathan Tobin: Why Did Kerry Lie About Israeli Blame?

Samuel G. Freedman: A resolution 70 years later for a father's unsettling legacy of ashes from Dachau

Jessica Ivins: A resolution 70 years later for a father's unsettling legacy of ashes from Dachau

Kim Giles: Asking for help is not weakness

Kathy Kristof and Barbara Hoch Marcus: 7 Great Growth Israeli Stocks

Matthew Mientka: How Beans, Peas, And Chickpeas Cleanse Bad Cholesterol and Lowers Risk of Heart Disease

Sabrina Bachai: 5 At-Home Treatments For Headaches

The Kosher Gourmet by Daniel Neman Have yourself a matzo ball: The secrets bubby never told you and recipes she could have never imagined

April 8, 2014

Lori Nawyn: At Your Wit's End and Back: Finding Peace

Susan B. Garland and Rachel L. Sheedy: Strategies Married Couples Can Use to Boost Benefits

David Muhlbaum: Smart Tax Deductions Non-Itemizers Can Claim

Jill Weisenberger, M.S., R.D.N., C.D.E : Before You Lose Your Mental Edge

Dana Dovey: Coffee Drinkers Rejoice! Your Cup Of Joe Can Prevent Death From Liver Disease

Chris Weller: Electric 'Thinking Cap' Puts Your Brain Power Into High Gear

The Kosher Gourmet by Marlene Parrish A gift of hazelnuts keeps giving --- for a variety of nutty recipes: Entree, side, soup, dessert

April 4, 2014

Rabbi David Gutterman: The Word for Nothing Means Everything

Charles Krauthammer: Kerry's folly, Chapter 3

Amy Peterson: A life of love: How to build lasting relationships with your children

John Ericson: Older Women: Save Your Heart, Prevent Stroke Don't Drink Diet

John Ericson: Why 50 million Americans will still have spring allergies after taking meds

Cameron Huddleston: Best and Worst Buys of April 2014

Stacy Rapacon: Great Mutual Funds for Young Investors

Sarah Boesveld: Teacher keeps promise to mail thousands of former students letters written by their past selves

The Kosher Gourmet by Sharon Thompson Anyone can make a salad, you say. But can they make a great salad? (SECRETS, TESTED TECHNIQUES + 4 RECIPES, INCLUDING DRESSINGS)

April 2, 2014

Paul Greenberg: Death and joy in the spring

Dan Barry: Should South Carolina Jews be forced to maintain this chimney built by Germans serving the Nazis?

Mayra Bitsko: Save me! An alien took over my child's personality

Frank Clayton: Get happy: 20 scientifically proven happiness activities

Susan Scutti: It's Genetic! Obesity and the 'Carb Breakdown' Gene

Lecia Bushak: Why Hand Sanitizer May Actually Harm Your Health

Stacy Rapacon: Great Funds You Can Own for $500 or Less

Cameron Huddleston: 7 Ways to Save on Home Decor

The Kosher Gourmet by Steve Petusevsky Exploring ingredients as edible-stuffed containers (TWO RECIPES + TIPS & TECHINQUES)

Jewish World Review March 19, 2012/ 25 Adar, 5772

Redistricting Not a Big Story in 2012

By Michael Barone




http://www.JewishWorldReview.com | The 2012 congressional redistricting cycle following the 2010 Census is just about over and done with. And it seems likely to make much less difference than many of us expected.

Redistricting is when state legislatures, governors and/or commissions draw new lines for congressional districts after the 435 seats in the U.S. House are reapportioned according to a statutory formula into which are plugged the figures from the 2010 census.

I predicted that this cycle, like the 2002 cycle, would produce significant gains for Republicans. Their success in electing governors and legislators in 2010 gave them control in big states like Texas, Florida, Pennsylvania, Ohio, Michigan, Georgia and North Carolina. And voters in Democratic California approved a ballot measure turning redistricting over to a nonpartisan commission.

But the Republican gain turns out to be modest to nonexistent. Charlie Cook's Cook Report estimates the net Republican gain from redistricting at exactly one state. My own estimates track with Cook's in just about every state and come up with a one-seat Republican gain.

One reason is that Democrats in control of redistricting in Illinois adopted a very aggressive plan that's likely to cost Republicans four seats. Democrats stretched Chicago districts out through the Cook County and Collar County suburbs to the downstate prairie and squeezed out Republicans there.

The most aggressive Republican plan was in North Carolina, where it replaced an aggressive Democratic plan adopted 10 years ago and seems sure to oust three or four Democrats.

In the other big states mentioned above, Republicans concentrated on bolstering current incumbents rather than creating new districts. Big Hispanic population increases in Texas and Florida forced Republicans to create new Democratic districts.

Another reason for Republicans' limited success is that Democrats successfully gamed the supposedly nonpartisan redistricting commissions in California and Arizona. Democrats will likely gain one seat in Arizona and two in California, even though for the first time in history that state gained no seats through reapportionment.

A third reason is the effect of the prevailing interpretation of the Voting Rights Act. Republicans have been helped by its insistence on the creation of black-majority districts. That crams heavily Democratic precincts into a few districts, leaving Republicans a better shot at districts next door.

But the law also insists on Hispanic-majority districts, although few Hispanics have ancestors subject to discrimination in this country and although many are non-citizens ineligible to vote. In Texas, where Hispanics are less Democratic than elsewhere, Republican redistricters adjusted by creating several elongated districts linking Hispanic-majority areas with heavily Republican counties.

All these results tend to refute some conventional wisdom about redistricting.

It is said that partisan redistricting can swing dozens of seats the way of one party through the creation of grotesquely shaped districts. But most grotesque districts in the current cycle owe their shape to the Voting Rights Act. Otherwise partisan districting has produced pretty clean lines.

A few years ago, many lamented that crafty redistricters could prevent serious competition and lock in party control. But that's only true when political alignments are static, as they were between 1996 and 2004.

When voters change their minds, redistricters can turn out to be too clever by half. Many districts designed to elect Republicans elected Democrats in 2006 and 2008. Many districts designed to elect Democrats elected Republicans in 2010.

The less aggressive redistricting plans adopted this cycle show that even strong partisans have absorbed the lesson that if you create a bunch of 53 percent districts you can lose them when your side's support goes down by 4 or 5 percent.

In addition, patterns of support can and usually do change at some point in the 10-year interval between censuses, as issue focus changes and presidents and presidential candidates give parties different images. Democratic areas can become marginal or even Republican, while some marginal areas can trend toward Democrats; and vice versa.

Currently the realclearpolitics.com average of recent polls shows a 44 to 44 percent tie between the parties on the generic ballot ("which party's candidate for the House would you vote for?"). That question has underpredicted Republican performance in the election in the past, though not in 2010.

But assuming the popular vote is evenly split, Republicans are likely to retain their House majority — primarily because the Voting Rights Act packs too many Democrats into too few districts. Redistricting turns out to matter less than we thought.

Every weekday JewishWorldReview.com publishes what many in the media and Washington consider "must-reading". Sign up for the daily JWR update. It's free. Just click here.

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JWR contributor Michael Barone is senior political analyst for The Washington Examiner.




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