This blog has been sleeping for WAY too long. Let’s try to get it rolling again, at least as a place to continue flagging a wide variety of ethically and politically charged issues that arise within deliberately adversarial institutions.
There have been a few redistricting controversies recently. (Is there actually a “season” for redistricting, or does it happen on different timetables all over the country?) These are always potentially problematic: they amount to changes in the “rules” of the contest that can significantly affect the outcome of the contest — and yet in most states in the US, some contestants themselves (elected politicians) are often in a position to manipulate the rule-change (by changing the boundaries of electoral districts) in ways they help them win. As a strategy for winning elections, it seems a lot closer to bribing the referee than to winning because you are more talented player.
In any case, here is a long story in the New Yorker about an elaborate “plot” (or “strategy,” depending on your political affiliation) by Republican strategist Ed Gillespie, and bankrolled by multimillionaire Art Pope, to gain control of state houses in order to get favorable redistricting for federal congressional elections.