By Samantha Dominas,
Campus Vote democracy fellow
Have you ever had a class that opened your eyes so completely that you found yourself with an unexpected calling? That was me in my political science class with Professor (Brooke) Allen at Macomb.
I was still in high school at the time, a student in the Early College of Macomb program, and had never heard of gerrymandering before. And, perhaps, you haven’t either? It’s this practice where the political party holding majority power in the state legislature redraws election districts to favor their candidates and candidacies. The opportunity for redistricting occurs every ten years after release of new U.S. Census numbers.
But gerrymandering is no longer as issue in Michigan.
The Independent Citizens Redistricting Commission, established by a constitutional amendment approved by voters in 2018, is overseeing the redrawing of election districts following Michigan’s 2020 loss of a seat in the U.S. House of Representatives.
This is huge! If you, like me, want to watch democracy in action, visit https://www.michigan.gov/micrc.
Meanwhile, I’ve accepted an assignment as a democracy fellow with the Campus Vote project. I’m responsible for talking with my fellow students about the democratic process and providing them with the information and encouragement they need to register to vote in time for the next election.
You see, the democratic process isn’t just about candidates. It’s also about eye-opening issues like gerrymandering that can only be addressed in the voting booth. How about you? Have you registered to vote yet?