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5 things to know about the ballot proposal to end gerrymandering in Michigan


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There's ballot petition currently circulating that seeks to end gerrymandering in Michigan.

The Board of State Canvassers approved the format of the petition on August 17, and the group spearheading the campaign, Voters Not Politicians, has been collecting signatures since then.

The group will need to collect just under 316,000 valid signatures in six months in order to get on the November 2018 ballot.

The proposal is over six pages long, and state election officials have said it is one of the most complex proposals they’ve ever seen.

Which makes sense, since the rules governing the drawing of congressional and statewide legislative districts is complex.

Michigan Radio’s Zoe Clark explains gerrymandering this way:

"The U.S. has a census every 10 years. It's part of the Constitution. And in part it's to help apportion the country's 435 seats in the U.S. House of Representatives.

Gerrymandering is the idea of drawing those political maps of the 435 seats for political advantage. If you draw the maps, you try to make sure your voters are in the majority in each district. Or you lump together your opposing voters so that their votes just don't go as far.”

And if you prefer video. You can watch this TED-Ed video:



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