Our political process favors the will of the parties over the will of the people, it favors the interests of the well-connected over the interests of the majority, and it favors opposition over political cooperation.
We know about these problems, and we know how to fix them. What we seem to lack is the political will to change things.
A primary driver is partisan redistricting, for which Mike supports an independent redistricting commission.
Every 10 years, the United States performs a census, gathering information about how many people live in certain areas. With this updated information, new lines have to be drawn to ensure that our electoral districts have roughly equal representation.
Virginia, along with most of the United States, allows our legislature to draw our district lines. That means that our legislators are choosing their own district lines, which is an inherent conflict of interest. It would be nice to give them the benefit of the doubt that they will draw fair, reasonable lines, but history has shown time and again that our elected officials would rather have easier elections, and favor their political party over improving our political process.
To solve the problem of gerrymandering, we need an independent redistricting commission. Independent of the legislature, independent of partisan politics, and without conflicts of interest. There’s no way to fully remove politics from any process, but that doesn’t mean we should surrender to politics entirely.