Despite the upsets and shocks of the 2016 election, the results for one governing body came as no surprise — that of the U.S. House of Representatives.
While Southern states like Florida, Georgia, North Carolina and Virginia were hotly contested in the presidential race and in some cases in U.S. Senate races, there was never much of a question that Republicans would maintain their edge in these states’ congressional delegations or that they would keep control of the House overall. While Democrats did gain seats in the House on Tuesday, Republicans still continue to hold a 239 to 193 majority.
That’s due in no small part to gerrymandering — politicians drawing district lines for partisan advantage. Often criticized for corrupting the democratic process by allowing representatives to pick their voters and create “safe” districts, the practice was used largely to Republicans’ advantage in Southern states as they swept control of many legislatures in 2010 and drew new district lines that would be in place for the decade to come…….