New Hampshire among states with GOP redistricting advantage

AP Image

AP Image

The partisan tilt was more than any other state, except for Texas, according to AP's national analysis.

"Obviously if you're the party in power and your members wanted to draw districts that helped themselves get elected, to a certain extent that's naturally going to benefit the majority", Kottkamp noted.

It was among the findings of a broader AP analysis of partisan gerrymandering, which found a distinct advantage for Republicans in last year's general election. The analysis suggests there was a slight Republican advantage in the 2016 election produced by the redistricting in 2011 of the state's seven seats. The map was drawn behind closed doors, and mapmakers released no records to explain their strategy.

A previous efficiency gap analysis conducted by Simon Jackman, a former professor of political science and statistics at Stanford University, found that the Republican advantage was even higher in the 2012 and 2014 Missouri House elections.

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"Republicans have done a good job of targeting those areas and getting good candidates and putting a lot of money into marginal districts, which they tend to win", he said. Nevada's districts were decided by a court, but Republicans complained at the time that they appeared more favorable to Democrats.

Ultimately, Republicans picked up a 13th district in a state where registered Democratic voters outnumber Republicans by a margin of 4 to 3. Republicans helped gain dominance in Florida by controlling that process in 2002. And only four other states had a lower percentage of contested races in 2016, when most states held state House elections, according to the AP's analysis. Jerry Torr, R-Carmel, looked to fix the issue ahead of the upcoming redistricting in 2021 by recommending a bipartisan independent commission be used to determine political lines.

The efficiency gap model was developed by University of Chicago law professor Nick Stephanopoulos and Eric McGhee, of the nonpartisan Public Policy Institute of California. The U.S. Supreme Court has agreed to hear an appeal.

"Party control of redistricting is a powerful driver of the efficiency gap".

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A political map-making process controlled by Ohio Republicans resulted in the party winning almost two more U.S. House seats and five more Ohio House seats in the last election than would have been expected in neutral circumstances, an Associated Press analysis has found.

The formula compares the statewide average share of the vote that a party receives with the statewide percentage of seats the party won, taking into account that in politics, each percentage point share of statewide votes generally accounts for a 2 percentage point increase in seat share.

Republican lawmakers have steadfastly defended the state districts lines as legal and fair, and noted that many GOP candidates have won in districts that Democratic in presidential elections.

Court precedent says gerrymandering can be unconstitutional, although there is no definitive answer to the question of how large an efficiency gap must be to indicate an unconstitutional gerrymander. The GOP won as many as 22 House seats more than would have been expected from the average vote share in congressional districts across the United States. Pennsylvania fits that description.

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