Black politicians are enraged that Hispanic immigration in the Los Angeles basin is resulting in the elimination of a safe black Congressional district. Of course, all the black politicians who supported not only racial gerrymandernig but the Voting Rights Act are being hoisted on their own petard. And now they are angry. But few are admitting the reason blacks are on the way out politically. (h/t Election Law Center)
By John Hrabe, City Journal November 3, 2011
California’s black leaders have a problem with the Voting Rights Act...
Throughout the mapmaking process, Brown and Kolkey advised the commission that in order to comply with Section 2 of the Voting Rights Act, the commission must draw every possible “majority-minority” district in any area with a history of racially polarized voting. Brown made it easy for the citizen commissioners; he gave them a simple numerical bright line of 50 percent. In essence, if census figures show half a district’s worth of historically underrepresented minorities, the commission must draw a corresponding district. Brown based his standard on a 2009 U.S. Supreme Court decision, Bartlett v. Strickland, which set a 50 percent standard for legal standing in redistricting challenges. But with demographic changes in Los Angeles County, that benchmark spelled trouble for the region’s three black members of Congress: Karen Bass, Maxine Waters, and Laura Richardson. Since the 2001 reapportionment, L.A.’s black population declined from 9.5 percent to 8.3 percent—enough for one, maybe two, but certainly not three majority-black districts. [And why? Hispanic immigration.]
Black political leaders weren’t about to surrender that third congressional seat without a fight. “We ain’t going nowhere,” vowed L.A. County Supervisor Mark Ridley-Thomas in July. “Our descendants fought, bled, and died to have a right to participate in the political process and we are not going to start sitting down now.” Redistricting commissioner Andre Parvenu proposed an alternative plan to split black voters across three districts. Just one problem: the “30-30-30” plan was a clear violation of the Voting Rights Act. “I don’t think that on its face there is a legal basis for saying just draw three districts with 30 percent African-American voting strength in the same areas that they’re in now,” Brown told the commission in May. “I don’t understand the legal argument for doing that.” Other redistricting experts echoed Brown’s view. Chandra Sharma, a redistricting consultant with Meridian Pacific, testified that a 30 percent split would “apply a different [VRA] standard to Latino populations versus African-American populations.” He added in a recent interview: “The redistricting commission, in drawing congressional districts in South Central Los Angeles, chose to violate both their own mandate and the Federal Voting Rights Act in order to protect a set of incumbent legislators.”
And, in fact, black people are going. They are being replaced by Hispanics, either by hook or by crook. And blacks are co-conspirators in the sunseting of their political power. And no one deserves it more for the damage they did to this country. Don`t let the door hit you on the way out.
Here are the Numbers USA grades for the black representatives from the City of Angels:
I would call this political suicide.