Monday, 18 April 2005

Reapportionment math

Steven Jens has posted some dummied-up figures for how the reapportionment of Congress would go if the population trends in 2004 continue through the end of the decade. It’s moderately interesting that both Alabama and Louisiana would lose a representative each; like Mississippi, one presumes they are gaining population, but not quickly enough to keep pace with the national rate.

Also: will someone explain to me why when legislative districts don’t have equal populations people use the term “malapportionment”? Reapportionment refers to the process of allocating House seats to states, while redistricting refers to the process of redrawing district boundaries to compensate for population shifts within states, so why would bad (or nonexistent) redistricting be called malapportionment instead of maldistricting? (If I don’t get an answer here, I may have to interrogate my civil liberties students Wednesday on this topic…)