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1  General Politics / Political Geography & Demographics / Re: Wisconsin Legislative Redistricting on: Today at 08:58:10 am
Moving on to Waukesha and surroundings 2016:



AD 31 (Brookfield): PVI (-17.2, -18.0 -10.6)
AD 32 (New Berlin): PVI (-16.5, -19.4, -15.4)
AD 33 (Waukesha city): PVI (-7.4, -10.6, -6.8 )

AD 34 (Muskego): PVI (-20.0, -23.2, -22.1)
AD 35 (Oconomowoc): PVI (-18.7, -22.3, -18.5)
AD 36 (Pewaukee): PVI (-20.8, -24.1, -20.2)

AD 37 (Menominee Falls): PVI (-15.5, -18.0, -13.6)
AD 38 (Hartford): PVI (-21.0, -24.3, -25.0)
AD 39 (West Bend): PVI (-16.6, -20.6, -21.7)

AD 40 (Fort Atkinson): PVI (-0.9, -2.3, -6.0)
AD 41 (Watertown): PVI (-11.4, -15.6, -21.0)
AD 42 (Beaver Dam): PVI (-5.3, -4.2, -12.3)

The suburban areas nearest Milwaukee (ADs 31, 32, 33, 37) show a push back against Trump and a Dem shift in the PVI. Farther west in AD 40, 41, 42 the typical rural Pub swing is present.
2  General Politics / Political Geography & Demographics / Re: Wisconsin Legislative Redistricting on: February 23, 2017, 09:24:17 pm
With all our discussion of Madison, I decided to pull the Dane county data for 2016 and see what the ADs show.



AD 43 (Sun Prairie): PVI (9.9, 9.9, 11.1)
AD 44 (Monona): PVI (21.5, 23.6, 22.1)
AD 45 (Madison - North Side): PVI (30.7, 32.8, 35.3)

AD 46 (Madison - UW): PVI (29.3, 26.7, 34.0)
AD 47 (Madison - Arboretum): PVI (27.3, 28.8, 34.0)
AD 48 (Middleton): PVI D+18 (17.9, 17.1, 25.4)

AD 49 (Stoughton): PVI D+12 (12.6, 11.0, 12.7)
AD 50 (Fitchburg): PVI D+15 (15.7, 14.7, 20.4)
AD 51 (Waunakee): PVI D+9 (10.0, 8.8, 13.0)

Now we see the violence inherent in the system. Well actually we see the polarization inherent in the electorate. The PVI shift I've been showing in N and W WI has all been Pub. Yet in Dane it's all to the Dems, including shifts in excess of 5%. But this is an area that Dems were already dominant, and they've packed even more of their voters in this white liberal bastion in 2016.
3  General Discussion / Constitution and Law / Re: End of gerrymandering on: February 23, 2017, 11:57:07 am
STV in statewide districts

Interesting but the number of candidates in say California and votes would make it rather complex, no?


"Independent" commissions are just a different type of gerrymander IMO. How about minimizing county splits.

Some commissions are bad and some legislatures are pretty good.

Commissions alone are not enough. Iowa has a whole county requirement and combination. Commission offers the legislature maps and if they reject the first two, whatever the third map is, gets picked.

You have to have a good set of a rules. A good set of rules can leash a bad legislature to bring it under control (Florida). A Commission with a weak set of guidelines can be just a bad as a legislature (Arizona).

Some of the best maps in my opinion of the previous cycle were drawn by courts (New York and Colorado).



I agree that the rules are more important than the body. With good software and well-defined rules there's nothing that prevents the public from drawing the maps. Final approval can happen by the legislature as in IA.
4  General Politics / Political Geography & Demographics / Re: Wisconsin Legislative Redistricting on: February 23, 2017, 04:54:37 am
Luckily by the next census, the Town of Madison will probably have been annexed by Madison and Fitchburg. Burke and Blooming Grove hopefully will be gone by 2030. You will also see further growth of Madison into the towns of Middleton, Verona, and Westport. Possibly Cottage Grove and Sun Prairie in the long term. This could also result in Cottage Grove, Verona, and Waunakee merging with their respective towns to prevent the spread of Madison.

Also should note that the Windsor has upgraded from a town to a village, due to their issues with DeForest.

Apparently the plan going back over a decade was to dissolve the Town of Madison in 2022. Last summer Madison and Fitchburg proposed moving that up to the end of 2016 with most going to Madison and a few southern pieces going to Fitchburg. Since the Town of Madison is still holding meetings, it looks like that hasn't happened.

Blooming Grove has an agreement with Madison to dissolve by 2027, so they will be around for only one more Census. The agreement with Burke includes Madison, DeForest and Sun Prairie and extends until 2036.
5  General Politics / Political Geography & Demographics / Re: Wisconsin Legislative Redistricting on: February 22, 2017, 10:44:39 pm
So you are allowing connections across lakes? Both Monona and Maple Bluff are surrounded by Madison except for frontage on a lake.
Monona has a land connection to Blooming Grove town, and I am treating Columbus-ized towns as being self-contiguous. Mud Lake is not a significant body of water in any case.

I believe that the original boundary between Westport and Madison towns did not follow the PLSS, and that Maple Grove is in the original area of Westport town on the north side of Lake Mendota. On a satellite view you can see the road on the township line between Westport and Burke on the eastern edge of Maple Grove.

This is distinct from the case of Shorewood Hills, which was clearly within Madison town, and there are no residual parts of Madison town near it. However, if there were a case where the population of Shorewood Hills prevented Madison from having a whole number of districts, I could see placing Shorewood Hills with Middleton.

Summary: I disagree with Monona. I can see your point with Maple Grove. When I make the division of Madison, I will take into account the possibility of adding Maple Grove.

Mud Lake is wider than most rivers and there is no bridge. You can say they are contiguous, but to me that's like linking across a body like the Wisconsin river where there is no bridge. Your plan is legal, but much as you have your opinion about population deviation I strive for units that are actually connected.

You  can't get to the "part" of Madison that splits the two pieces of Blooming Grove from the state capitol without going through Blooming Grove.

And it is trivial to get between McFarland and Monona and spend less than a minute in Madison. If you asked for directions in McFarland to get to Monona, do you think someone would tell you that there was no way without going through Madison?

I realize that we fundamentally disagree on the nature and applicability of nick cuts. My bias is heavily influenced by experts who suggested in the last cycle that one of the best criteria to reduce the power of gerrymandering is to require that all parts of a district are connected by road.

Where there are disconnected units one can either treat each piece separately or allow the district to be disconnected based on individual fragments. The second choice is the one WI uses. I can respect that, but I won't use the existence of a disconnected fragment to extend a district into a unit that only connects with that fragment, but not the rest of the district.
I do not know the context that the experts were speaking of. Can you cite specific instances where they drew gerrymanders based on non-road contiguity? Are these applicable at all to where the districts are assemblages of legal political subdivisions?

If you are going to take the expert advice literally, then you can not draw a Madison city council district into that area. Madison city limits are a gerrymander, and by accepting them as a basis for apportionment, you are perpetuating the gerrymander.

Here is my comprehension of the political subdivisions in the central part of Dane County.



The major components of Burke, Westport, and Blooming Grove towns are shown with two nodes indicating the major concentration. A connection with any part of the town is a connection with the whole town.

Madison city is shown as two nodes for simplicity.

Verona, Cottage Grove, and Dane (town and village/city) have been indicated with a single node for simplicity.

Lake Mendota and Lake Monona are shown in brown, their location is only indicative.

DeForest is indicated as the main (northern) populated portion of the village. The southern portions appear to be developable, and if they were, I'd permit a connection to Burke town. I could not find an explanation of DeForest. It has the appearance of an annexation followed by a lawsuit that forced a detachment.

The orange connections indicate connections that may be near-corner. At a county level, an offset of one mile would be near corner. At a township level it is just below 5%, marginal but acceptable under certain circumstances.

Madison, Blooming Grove, and Burke towns have been separated from each other. They only connect inward and only.

The purple links from Madison city to McFarland and Sun Prairie city are acceptable. One would hope if you were extending the Madison apportionment area you would take some of the other territories.

I understand your map, but it differs from my view. For example, the node for Madison town is at 2120 Fish Hatchery Rd. That piece of Madison town is surrounded by Madison city, so the only connection is to the city. If however the town is chopped, then pieces that do not include the node can have nodes that are connected to other units like Fitchburg city.

Similarly the node or Blooming Grove town is at 1800 S Stoughton Rd. It's a parcel that only includes the town offices and is surrounded by Madison city. If the town is chopped, then other parts can connect to neighboring towns, but together it connects to Madison. It's a trade of chops of the town for other plan goals as I see it.

Both these towns are so intertwined with Madison that it makes sense for them to stay connected with Madison in redistricting. I would suggest that if the population of Madison city were not so close to exactly 4 ADs, then the status of the towns not combining with the city wouldn't even arise.
6  Forum Community / Off-topic Board / Re: Have you gotten snow yet this season? on: February 22, 2017, 10:13:35 pm
Chicago's 4 day streak of record highs was broken yesterday. It was mostly cloudy, and there was a little bit of rain, and that held the high to 66. That would have been good enough for a record on the previous days, but on 2/21/1930 it reached 67. Still, 66 is almost 30 degrees warmer tan the normal high of 37.

Chicago is back to record highs today after a one day, one degree lapse. It's only a tie of the 1922 record of 68, but it's great to enjoy this in Feb.
7  General Politics / Political Geography & Demographics / Re: Wisconsin Legislative Redistricting on: February 22, 2017, 10:16:20 am
Here's the 2016 update for SW WI.



AD 52 (Platteville): PVI (8.5, 5.2, -5.9)
AD 53 (Richland Center): PVI (8.3, 6.7, -3.0)
AD 54 (Baraboo): PVI (7.5, 7.1, -1.9)

AD 55 (Tomah): PVI (1.3, -2.3, -12.3)
AD 56 (Onalaska): PVI (1.9, 0.2, -2.6)
AD 57 (La Crosse): PVI (14.7, 14.0, 11.7)

AD 58 (Marshfield): PVI (2.3, 2.3, -12.9)
AD 59 (Wisconsin Rapids): PVI (3.7, -5.3, -11.7)
AD 60 (Stevens Point): PVI (11.6, 6.4, 2.7)

AD 61 (Portage): PVI (4.0, 4.9, -2.2)
AD 62 (Wautoma): PVI (-5.3, -8.3, -17.6)
AD 63 (Waupaca): PVI (-2.4, -5.9, -17.1)

The Driftless Zone has long been a source of rural Dem support. That rural Dem support was wiped out in 2016. Obama carried 8 of these 12 ADs in 2012 (11 out of 12 in 2008). In 2016 Clinton only carried 2. Even Kerry took 6 of these in 2004.


Gass - Let me know if you have any of the 2016 ward results processed into a spreadsheet yet.
8  About this Site / The Atlas / Re: Statement regarding hate speech on: February 22, 2017, 09:52:16 am
How does this affect policies for how to handle different thoughts on whether or not gender is different from sex and whether or not there are more than two genders?  Because some people don't like my stances on those questions.

This is actually a good question that deserves an answer.

If ER's earnest political belief is that transsexualism is a mental illness (A deplorable and bigoted belief that is nevertheless fairly mainstream), can he be punished for expressing those views? How far is he allowed to go? I doubt he will banned for simply stating his viewpoint, but what if he wants to only refer to a trans female person exclusively as "He/Him"? Or use the word "tranny"?

I'd agree that this is a good question, especially if it is confined just to ER's statement about the difference between sex and gender. A while ago I posted the definition I was raised on, as framed in my 1979 college graduation copy of Webster's Deluxe Unabridged Dictionary (2nd Ed). I use this since dictionaries capture the usage of words at the time of their publication.

Quote
gender, n.
1. in grammar, (a) the classification by which nouns and pronouns (and often accompanied modifiers) are grouped and inflected, or changed in form, in relation to sex or their lack of it ...
2. sex. [Colloq.]
Quote
sex n.
1. either of the two divisions of organisms distinguished as male or female; males or females collectively.
2. the character of being male or female; all of the things which distinguish a male from a female.
...

At that time for people of my age gender meant sex and it was strictly binary unless it was lacking (as neuter or asexual). Of course words change meaning over time, but not everyone gets the change at the same time. I think I understand the modern distinction, but for a large part of the population the newer meanings that differentiate the two words just haven't sunk in to their sense of language. More and more mainstream publications are starting to give the words separate meanings, but I still sometimes see a parenthetical explanation to help the reader understand that gender is being used in its newer sense which implies that they think readers may not think the words are different.

     The problem with having superfluous linguistic distinctions is that they can evolve in unpredictable ways. If you go back much further, gender meant something akin to genre or genus (both cognates), simply categories for purposes of classification.

Agreed about the prior meanings, but I wouldn't consider the distinctions superfluous. Language use is ingrained at an early age. A parlor game test of age is to show a number of objects and ask each person to name them, with different points for different answers that ideally add up to one's age. When language use changes, we can know about that change, but our internal sense is often still based on the language use of our youth. That creates a generational gap in understanding words that have changed meaning. What is relevant here is what words meant to Boomers (and before) vs what they mean to Millennials, especially when it involves the politics that surrounds those words.
9  Forum Community / Off-topic Board / Re: Have you gotten snow yet this season? on: February 22, 2017, 07:56:12 am
Chicago's 4 day streak of record highs was broken yesterday. It was mostly cloudy, and there was a little bit of rain, and that held the high to 66. That would have been good enough for a record on the previous days, but on 2/21/1930 it reached 67. Still, 66 is almost 30 degrees warmer tan the normal high of 37.
10  General Politics / Political Geography & Demographics / Re: Wisconsin Legislative Redistricting on: February 21, 2017, 11:46:33 pm
So you are allowing connections across lakes? Both Monona and Maple Bluff are surrounded by Madison except for frontage on a lake.
Monona has a land connection to Blooming Grove town, and I am treating Columbus-ized towns as being self-contiguous. Mud Lake is not a significant body of water in any case.

I believe that the original boundary between Westport and Madison towns did not follow the PLSS, and that Maple Grove is in the original area of Westport town on the north side of Lake Mendota. On a satellite view you can see the road on the township line between Westport and Burke on the eastern edge of Maple Grove.

This is distinct from the case of Shorewood Hills, which was clearly within Madison town, and there are no residual parts of Madison town near it. However, if there were a case where the population of Shorewood Hills prevented Madison from having a whole number of districts, I could see placing Shorewood Hills with Middleton.

Summary: I disagree with Monona. I can see your point with Maple Grove. When I make the division of Madison, I will take into account the possibility of adding Maple Grove.

Mud Lake is wider than most rivers and there is no bridge. You can say they are contiguous, but to me that's like linking across a body like the Wisconsin river where there is no bridge. Your plan is legal, but much as you have your opinion about population deviation I strive for units that are actually connected.

You  can't get to the "part" of Madison that splits the two pieces of Blooming Grove from the state capitol without going through Blooming Grove.

And it is trivial to get between McFarland and Monona and spend less than a minute in Madison. If you asked for directions in McFarland to get to Monona, do you think someone would tell you that there was no way without going through Madison?

I realize that we fundamentally disagree on the nature and applicability of nick cuts. My bias is heavily influenced by experts who suggested in the last cycle that one of the best criteria to reduce the power of gerrymandering is to require that all parts of a district are connected by road.

Where there are disconnected units one can either treat each piece separately or allow the district to be disconnected based on individual fragments. The second choice is the one WI uses. I can respect that, but I won't use the existence of a disconnected fragment to extend a district into a unit that only connects with that fragment, but not the rest of the district.
11  General Politics / Political Geography & Demographics / Re: Wisconsin Legislative Redistricting on: February 21, 2017, 10:28:58 pm
Here are the 2016 updates for my Green Bay and Lake Winnebago regions.





AD 64 (Menasha): PVI (0.1, -4.0, -9.6)
AD 65 (Neenah): PVI (3.8, 2.3, -2.8 )
AD 66 (Oshkosh): PVI (2.7, 1.2, -2.9)

AD 67 (Ripon): PVI (-10.9, -14.4, -20.6)
AD 68 (Fond du Lac): PVI (-3.4, -3.7, -9.6)
AD 69 (Harrison): PVI (-3.8, -8.5, -14.3)

AD 70 (Sheboygan): PVI (4.9, 3.7, 0.7)
AD 71 (Plymouth): PVI (-11.9, -16.2, -18.1)
AD 72 (Manitowoc): PVI (2.2, -0.5, -9.4)

AD 73 (Grand Chute): PVI (-4.0, -9.8, -22.3)
AD 74 (Kaukauna): PVI (5.3, -1.3, -9.2)
AD 75 (Appleton): PVI (5.5, 3.0, 2.4)

AD 76 (Sturgeon Bay): PVI (3.5, -1.4, -8.9)
AD 77 (Green Bay - east): PVI (6.2, 3.5, -0.3)
AD 78 (Green Bay - west): PVI (7.1, 5.6, -0.5)

AD 79 (Suamico): PVI (-1.2, -7.1, -17.8 )
AD 80 (Howard): PVI (-2.6, -6.3, -8.8 )
AD 81 (De Pere): PVI (-2.1, -7.4, -8.9)

Again it's interesting to see where there were large shifts, and where they were more modest. There are both D (Appleton) and R (Howard and De Pere outside of Green Bay) areas with small shifts, and other areas with dramatic shifts well in excess of the state's swing.
12  General Politics / Political Geography & Demographics / Re: Wisconsin Legislative Redistricting on: February 21, 2017, 09:49:17 pm
So you are allowing connections across lakes? Both Monona and Maple Bluff are surrounded by Madison except for frontage on a lake.
Monona has a land connection to Blooming Grove town, and I am treating Columbus-ized towns as being self-contiguous. Mud Lake is not a significant body of water in any case.

I believe that the original boundary between Westport and Madison towns did not follow the PLSS, and that Maple Grove is in the original area of Westport town on the north side of Lake Mendota. On a satellite view you can see the road on the township line between Westport and Burke on the eastern edge of Maple Grove.

This is distinct from the case of Shorewood Hills, which was clearly within Madison town, and there are no residual parts of Madison town near it. However, if there were a case where the population of Shorewood Hills prevented Madison from having a whole number of districts, I could see placing Shorewood Hills with Middleton.

Summary: I disagree with Monona. I can see your point with Maple Grove. When I make the division of Madison, I will take into account the possibility of adding Maple Grove.

Mud Lake is wider than most rivers and there is no bridge. You can say they are contiguous, but to me that's like linking across a body like the Wisconsin river where there is no bridge. Your plan is legal, but much as you have your opinion about population deviation I strive for units that are actually connected.
13  General Discussion / Constitution and Law / Re: VRA and majority-minority districts on: February 21, 2017, 08:44:05 am
OK, so I assume if Democrats were to split up a compact and electorally unified black electorate into separate "coalition" districts, they could argue that there is no requirement for a majority-minority district because the third Gingles condition would in this instance not apply seeing as the white majority does not vote as a bloc that denies blacks the right to select their preferred (Democratic) candidate?

They might be able to do that in cities where the white voters are overwhelmingly Dem and have shown a willingness to support the preferred minority candidate. That case has been successfully made in places like LA and Chicago, but it requires real data analysis to stand up. In other areas the best the Dems can do is show that a coalition allows a district to be slightly less than 50% minority and still perform for that minority. The new VA CDs are examples of that.
14  Forum Community / Off-topic Board / Re: Have you gotten snow yet this season? on: February 21, 2017, 08:31:23 am
Chicago made it 4 in row yesterday. The high of 70 beat the old record of 64 from 1930. It's going to seem like a shock when temperatures get back to normal highs in the upper 30's forecast for the weekend.
15  General Politics / Political Geography & Demographics / Re: Wisconsin Legislative Redistricting on: February 21, 2017, 08:07:45 am
Neutral districts can also say a lot about trends. Since they aren't gerrymandered to pack or crack parties they can show how the natural political leanings are shifting. For example, consider the 6 whole county ADs in northern WI. PVIs reflect a districts political leanings compared to the national presidential average, and I'll look at the last 3 cycles (2008, 2012, 2016) and negative numbers are Pub. Instead of averaging two cycles, I'll keep each cycle separate.



AD 85 (Merinette): PVI (-0.5, -4.1, -18.4)
AD 86 (Rhinelander): PVI (0.0, -4.7, -13.2)
AD 87 (Merrill): PVI (1.9, -1.8, -7.4)

AD 88 (Ashland): PVI (4.5, 2.6, -4.8 )
AD 89 (Superior): PVI (9.1, 8.9, -1.9)
AD 90 (Osceola): PVI (-4.1, -6.2, -15.7)

Notice that the Pub swing was already underway from 2008 to 2012, with shifts of up to almost -5% in AD 86. But the shift for 2016 is really astounding with PVI jumps of -14% in AD 85, and almost -11% in the tradition Dem bastion of Superior. It defies common wisdom that AD 89 would support a Pub candidate, yet Trump won by 458 votes out of over 30K cast. This is one of the clearest indications I've seen of the effect of the Dem loss of the WWC and why Trump won WI.


I pulled the Eau Claire ward results for 2016, so here's the rest of the north:

AD 82 (Shawano): PVI (-1.0, -6.8, -17.4)
AD 83 (Wausaw): PVI (2.9, -1.9, -6.4)
AD 84 (Weston): PVI (-1.3, -7.9, -13.6)

AD 91 (Chippewa Falls): PVI (0.2, -2.7, -14.2)
AD 92 (Eau Claire - north): PVI (8.1, 5.9, 1.0)
AD 93 (Eau Claire - south): PVI (5.8, 2.9, 1.5)

AD 94 (Medford): PVI (-1.4, -8.7, -20.8 )
AD 95 (Black River Falls): PVI (8.1, 4.3, -8.3)
AD 96 (River Falls): PVI (1.4, -1.8, -9.6)

AD 97 (Rice Lake): PVI (-0.0, -1.6, -14.3)
AD 98 (Menomonee): PVI (0.5, -4.8, -8.7)
AD 99 (Hudson): PVI (-5.8, -8.1, -10.0)

Unlike Superior, Dem Eau Claire saw much less shift in its PVI. This probably reflects the different economies, with Eau Claire relying more on tech and the headquarters for Menards stores than Superior's role as a shipping port. The nearby AD 95 that had been Dem, saw a 13 point Pub swing in its PVI with an economy primarily in agriculture and tourism.

On the flip side, Pub Hudson saw only a small shift. It is primarily exurbs of the Twin Cities and like other suburban areas has more commuters and less WWC. Also like many other suburban college educated areas it had a strong 3rd party vote in 2016.
16  Forum Community / Off-topic Board / Re: Post your college education (or lack thereof) and classes you've taken on: February 21, 2017, 06:30:52 am
BA in Mathematics and Physics
MS in Physics
PhD in Physics (thesis in Experimental Particle Physics)
20+ years teaching physics and astronomy at all levels from general education and undergraduate majors to graduate classes and PhD thesis supervision.
17  General Politics / Political Geography & Demographics / Re: Wisconsin Legislative Redistricting on: February 21, 2017, 06:19:17 am
So you are allowing connections across lakes? Both Monona and Maple Bluff are surrounded by Madison except for frontage on a lake.
18  General Politics / Political Geography & Demographics / Re: Wisconsin Legislative Redistricting on: February 20, 2017, 11:58:50 pm
I find relatively few court decisions that would justify a range in excess of 10%. What you would have to show is that given your goals, there is no way to achieve them without exceeding 10%. That requires a clear statement of those goals, in a way that is not unduly arbitrary, so that one can test them to see if they can be achieved without the deviation.

At this point your goals seem to be:
1) minimize county chops by establishing a maximum number of regions;
2) minimize chops of munis within a region;
2) minimize the standard deviation of the population of the districts.

Feel free to correct this or add as necessary.
19  Presidential Elections - Analysis and Discussion / Presidential Election Process / Re: Those who think National Popular Vote is what really matters... on: February 20, 2017, 08:23:08 pm
If Nixon got more popular votes in 1960, he should've won, as Clinton should've won, under an ideal electoral system.
well that not how it works in america we are a republic.

Uh, what about senators?

States are also a republic (republican form of government) and govs are also elected by direct PV.

And what about France? That is no Republic?


And France has a runoff if no one gets 50%. Many US cities do that, too, as do a few other offices. If the US is going to talk about PV for president, then it should talk about runoffs as well.
20  Forum Community / Forum Community / Re: Update for Everyone V: Born Under A Bad Sign on: February 20, 2017, 08:19:07 pm
Guys, I'm sitting here all sweaty, tremors in my hands, nauseous and weak because... I NEED ANOTHER ELECTION. I'm hooked. I'm going through acute electoral withdrawal.

Why can't we just fast-forward to 2017, then to 2018? I want answers! Sad

But there's so much data to analyze in the election just past. Smiley I'm finding all sorts of interesting info just in WI.
21  General Discussion / Constitution and Law / Re: VRA and majority-minority districts on: February 20, 2017, 07:23:30 pm
The first thing is to apply the Gingles test to an area: 1) is there a compact area where a single minority could make up over half the voting population; 2) does the minority tend to vote as a bloc for preferred candidates; and 3) does the white majority tend to vote as a bloc against the minority's preferred candidates. If the area passes the test the VRA requires that a district be drawn where the minority can elect the candidate of their choice, and that needn't be at 50% VAP if it can be shown that through primaries or by crossover voters the minority is likely to prevail. If multiple districts could be drawn for the minority, then one has to look at the totality of the circumstances including the rough proportionality of the minority to the total voting population.

If the Gingles test doesn't apply, then the mappers are not bound by the VRA to keep the minority intact.
22  Forum Community / Off-topic Board / Re: The best Science-Fiction universe/story? on: February 20, 2017, 03:12:38 pm
Star Wars and Star Trek win hands down.  We could base our technological advancements on the models set in these stories.  We already do with Minority Report, after all.  

Also, I'd like the United States develop a new space force, in particular these X-wing fighter planes:



 



That's part of why I mentioned Asimov's robot stories tied in with Foundation. So much of how we now perceive the interactions of humans and androids is rooted in Asimov's stories. The Star Wars droids are no exception.
23  General Politics / Political Geography & Demographics / Re: Wisconsin Legislative Redistricting on: February 20, 2017, 02:50:23 pm
Neutral districts can also say a lot about trends. Since they aren't gerrymandered to pack or crack parties they can show how the natural political leanings are shifting. For example, consider the 6 whole county ADs in northern WI. PVIs reflect a districts political leanings compared to the national presidential average, and I'll look at the last 3 cycles (2008, 2012, 2016) and negative numbers are Pub. Instead of averaging two cycles, I'll keep each cycle separate.



AD 85 (Merinette): PVI (-0.5, -4.1, -18.4)
AD 86 (Rhinelander): PVI (0.0, -4.7, -13.2)
AD 87 (Merrill): PVI (1.9, -1.8, -7.4)

AD 88 (Ashland): PVI (4.5, 2.6, -4.8 )
AD 89 (Superior): PVI (9.1, 8.9, -1.9)
AD 90 (Osceola): PVI (-4.1, -6.2, -15.7)

Notice that the Pub swing was already underway from 2008 to 2012, with shifts of up to almost -5% in AD 86. But the shift for 2016 is really astounding with PVI jumps of -14% in AD 85, and almost -11% in the tradition Dem bastion of Superior. It defies common wisdom that AD 89 would support a Pub candidate, yet Trump won by 458 votes out of over 30K cast. This is one of the clearest indications I've seen of the effect of the Dem loss of the WWC and why Trump won WI.


This is true, but I think it's easy to forget just how big and in many ways unprecedented Obama's win was in Wisconsin in 2008. He won counties that Democrats almost never win. 2004 to 2016 would be a better comparison.

Actually the changes are just as striking if one goes back to 2004. The Rhinelander AD I drew was R+2.4 in 2004, and only shifted to even in 2008, but then goes to R+4.7 and R+13.2 in 2012 and 2016. The Superior AD was actually D+12.8 in 2004 and lost some ground in 2008, before careening to R+1.9 in 2016. Both districts (one heavy D and one lean R) shifted Pub by double digits over that period. The beauty of the PVI is that it accounts for the effects of a national wave like Obama in 2008 so one can see the underlying local trends.
24  General Politics / Political Geography & Demographics / Re: Wisconsin Legislative Redistricting on: February 20, 2017, 02:35:52 pm
I have decided to eliminate the single-district counties with a deviation of between 5% and 10% (Sauk, Waupaca, and Chippewa). Rather than redo the entire map, I made as few changes as possible - as if I was responding to a court decision.

Sauk (1.079) is added to the region comprised of Dane, Green, Iowa, and Lafayette. The average error for that group improves from -1.6% to -0.7%.

(7) Dane, Sauk, Green, Iowa, and Lafayette 10.922 (11), -0.7% 8 districts in Dane, 1 district in Sauk, 1 in Green and Dane(part) (65% in Green), and 1 in Iowa, Lafayette, Sauk(part), and Dane (part)(8/10 in Iowa, Lafayette, and Sauk). Three surplus fragments, with two surplus fragments in Dane.

Waupaca (0.912) is added to Outagamie, recognizing a small surplus in Outagamie. The average error improves from +2.5% to -0.3%.

(12) Outagamie and Waupaca, 3.988 (4) -0.3%. Three districts in Outagamie, with the fourth district comprised of Waupaca (90% plus of district) and a small surplus fragment of Outagamie. One surplus fragment.

Chippewa (1.087) is added to a region comprised of Lincoln, Taylor, Sawyer, Washburn, Rusk, and Price 1.929(2) -3.5%. The region is then split, with a northern region consisting of Sawyer, Washburn, Rusk, and Price; and southern region comprised of Chippewa, Lincoln, and Taylor. The northern district will be slightly overpopulated, but a split of a small county is eliminated.

(17) Chippewa, Lincoln, and Taylor, 1.947 (2) -2.6%. One district in Chippewa, one district in Lincoln and Taylor, with a small portion of Chippewa (about 1/9 of the district). One surplus fragment.

(27) Sawyer, Washburn, Rusk, and Price 1.069(2) +6.9%. One district, no county splits Slightly excessive deviation.

We both have 27 whole county regions, so in principle we should match in chop count. Will you be able to maintain a 10% range given the deviation of (27)? I had to work at mine with only the 5.2% deviation of West Allis. It's grouped with West Milwaukee at -4.7% to get the range to 9.884%. The tricky part was watching some of the lower pop regions to make sure none went beyond the -4.7% deviation. 6.9% forces a floor of -3.1%.
The overall range is irrelevant, and pandering to innumerate judges.

I will defend my plan based on a meaningful statistic such as standard deviation, and justify the few outliers as avoiding unnecessary division of political subdivisions.


Then why change from your original model using single counties with deviations up to 10%? How does that differ in complying with range requirements? In any case, this exercise arose in response to a court decision that WI had to redraw its districts. A plan that doesn't meet the basic court requirements isn't going to be as useful in showing the court what types of alternatives exist to replace the current plan.
25  Forum Community / Off-topic Board / Re: Have you gotten snow yet this season? on: February 20, 2017, 10:39:21 am
We have a record high today of 67 at O'Hare smashing the old record of 60 from 1880. It's been so mild for the last two months, that many people I've talked to have forgotten how severe the first half of Dec was. We also can joke about the groundhog claiming 6 more weeks of winter. Cheesy

What an incredibly beautiful Saturday it is today in Chicago. One of those unseasonably warm February days that you could just sit/walk around outside all day. Currently 63 and not a cloud in the sky.

And it reached 67 surpassing the old record of 62 from 1981. Then again it was a beautiful day to test drive some cars after spending a day at the Chicago Auto Show last Sat.

The NWS service officially put the high on 2/18 at 70.

Yesterday reached 69 beating 65 from 1930. The pleasant temps led to a nice hike in the Morton Arboretum. The witch hazel was in bloom, but there were still some thin ice spots on large shaded ponds. We will see today if we can make it 4 record days in a row.
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