Evaluating Partisan Gerrymandering in Wisconsin

Journal Article (Academic article)

We examine the extent of gerrymandering for the 2010 General Assembly district map of Wisconsin. We find that there is substantial variability in the election outcome depending on what maps are used. We also found robust evidence that the district maps are highly gerrymandered and that this gerrymandering likely altered the partisan make up of the Wisconsin General Assembly in some elections. Compared to the distribution of possible redistricting plans for the General Assembly, Wisconsin's chosen plan is an outlier in that it yields results that are highly skewed to the Republicans when the statewide proportion of Democratic votes comprises more than 50-52% of the overall vote (with the precise threshold depending on the election considered). Wisconsin's plan acts to preserve the Republican majority by providing extra Republican seats even when the Democratic vote increases into the range when the balance of power would shift for the vast majority of redistricting plans.

Full Text

Duke Authors

Cited Authors

  • Herschlag, G; Ravier, R; Mattingly, JC

Published Date

  • September 2, 2017