Evenwel, Voting Power and Dual Districting

14 Pages Posted: 17 Jul 2015 Last revised: 30 Jun 2016

See all articles by Paul H. Edelman

Paul H. Edelman

Vanderbilt University - Law School

Date Written: November 13, 2015


In this paper I will show that it is always possible to draw representation districts that will be simultaneously close in both total population and citizen voting age population (or, indeed, any pair of populations that is desired.) Thus the Supreme Court need not choose between equalizing representation and equalizing voting power as it is asked to do in Evenwel v Abbott. By example I show that requiring equality of both total population and citizen voting age population may force the dilution of minority votes, though. Some of my analysis depends on how the Court chooses to assess the deviation in voting power. I derive the relationship between the deviation of voting power and the deviation of voting populations and show that the standard of 10% deviation in the voting population leads to a deviation of less than 10% in voting power over a broad range of models.

Keywords: Evenwel v Abbott, Voting, Districting

Suggested Citation

Edelman, Paul H., Evenwel, Voting Power and Dual Districting (November 13, 2015). Journal of Legal Studies, Vol. 45, (January, 2016), 203-221; Vanderbilt Law and Economics Research Paper No. 15-16; Vanderbilt Public Law Research Paper No. 15-19. Available at SSRN: https://ssrn.com/abstract=2631666 or http://dx.doi.org/10.2139/ssrn.2631666

Paul H. Edelman (Contact Author)

Vanderbilt University - Law School ( email )

131 21st Avenue South
Nashville, TN 37203-1181
United States
615-322-0990 (Phone)
615-322-6631 (Fax)

Register to save articles to
your library


Paper statistics

Abstract Views
PlumX Metrics