Former Attorney General Eric Holder wants 2020 Democrats to focus on gerrymandering, warning that the party’s gains in the House could be reversed if not enough attention is paid to the issue.
“This is something that candidates need to talk about, out of concern that if you win and you got a gerrymandered House of Representatives—we’ve seen that picture before,” Holder told POLITICO. “We’ve seen what that looks like: a progressive trying to deal with a gerrymandered House and a Republican Senate. So they need to engage more.”
The former attorney general, and current chairman of the National Democratic Restricting Committee (NDRC), told the publication he is considering drawing up, for lack of a better term, a pledge for candidates to sign, in which they would promise to focus on redistricting efforts. Currently, the NDRC is researching the impact gerrymandering could have on the next election cycle—while Democrats took back the House last year, Holder is concerned the party is not doing enough to help candidates in local court elections.
“It felt a little lonely,” lamented the NDRC president, referencing his time campaigning in Wisconsin for the Democratic judicial candidate who lost last month. “That’s an indication that Republicans are still prepared to spend a lot of money on these races, even in a spring off-year election with a flawed candidate… That’s a wakeup call. The notion the ‘blue wall’ has been put back into place—there’s cause for optimism, but it’s not done.”
In Wisconsin, Republicans will continue holding a majority on the Supreme Court, where they will have the authority to rule on potential gerrymandering cases. In Michigan, however, a panel of federal judges called Republican’s redistricted congressional and state legislative maps unconstitutionally gerrymandered, and ordered new ones to be drawn—though this is contingent on other Supreme Court rulings on the issue.