Resolving the Dilemma of Minority Representation

78 Pages Posted: 14 Sep 2004

See all articles by Grant M. Hayden

Grant M. Hayden

Southern Methodist University - Dedman School of Law

Abstract

This article proposes that recent work in philosophy on the issue of interpersonal utility comparisons may be used to help resolve a significant problem in minority representation. The creation of majority-minority districts has had the unintended consequence of forcing minority voting rights advocates to choose between increasing the number of minority officeholders and increasing the number of Democrats. This dilemma is, in part, due to the strict application of the one person, one vote standard. But work on the issue of interpersonal utility comparisons tells us that the one person, one vote standard is not the objective standard it purports to be; instead, it involves fairly straightforward normative judgments. The article, therefore, argues for relaxing the strict application of the one person, one vote standard in the context of minority vote dilution claims, which would allow us to numerically concentrate minority voting power through the creation of smaller majority-minority districts.

Keywords: voting rights, majority-minority districts, one person one vote, minority vote dilution

Suggested Citation

Hayden, Grant M., Resolving the Dilemma of Minority Representation. California Law Review, Vol. 92, December 2004. Available at SSRN: https://ssrn.com/abstract=590706

Grant M. Hayden (Contact Author)

Southern Methodist University - Dedman School of Law ( email )

P.O. Box 750116
Dallas, TX 75275
United States

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