Paradoxes of Political Reform: Congressional Redistricting In Florida

McKee, Seth (Ed.), Jigsaw Puzzle Politics in the Sunshine State. University Press of Florida. Forthcoming.

20 Pages Posted: 8 Apr 2014

See all articles by Micah Altman

Micah Altman

Massachusetts Institute of Technology (MIT) Libraries; The Brookings Institution

Michael P. McDonald

University of Florida

Date Written: July 7, 2013

Abstract

The reforms to the redistricting process in Florida, catalyzed by advances in information technology, enabled a dramatic increase in public participation in the redistricting process. This reform process in Florida can be considered a partial success: The adopted plan implements one the the most efficient observable trade-offs among the reformer’s criteria, primarily along the lines of racial representation by creating an additional Black-majority district in the form of the current 5th Congressional District. This does not mean, however, that reform was entirely successful. The adopted plan is efficient, but is atypical of the plans submitted by the legislature and public. Based on the pattern of public submissions, and on contextual information, we suspect the adopted plan was drawn for partisan motivations. The public preference and good-government criteria might be better served by the selection of the other efficient plans – that were much more competitive, and less biased, at the cost of a reduction of the majority-minority seat.

Suggested Citation

Altman, Micah and McDonald, Michael P., Paradoxes of Political Reform: Congressional Redistricting In Florida (July 7, 2013). McKee, Seth (Ed.), Jigsaw Puzzle Politics in the Sunshine State. University Press of Florida. Forthcoming.. Available at SSRN: https://ssrn.com/abstract=2421908 or http://dx.doi.org/10.2139/ssrn.2421908

Micah Altman (Contact Author)

Massachusetts Institute of Technology (MIT) Libraries ( email )

77 Massachusetts Avenue
50 Memorial Drive
Cambridge, MA 02139-4307
United States

HOME PAGE: http://informatics.mit.edu

The Brookings Institution ( email )

1775 Massachusetts Ave, NW
Washington, DC 20036
United States

HOME PAGE: http://informatics.mit.edu

Michael P. McDonald

University of Florida ( email )

PO Box 117165, 201 Stuzin Hall
Gainesville, FL 32610-0496
United States

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