Symptom of a Dying Democracy
Sometimes you read about somebody dying after a long illness. Democracy is having a long illness, but we don’t yet know if it’s going to die after it. Democracy is sicker in some parts of the country than in others. Its illness is particularly severe in Wisconsin, where, even though there is a slightly greater number of Democrats than Republicans, when the Republicans got control, they pulled off some of the most anti-democratic gerrymandering in the country, so that at this point, even if more people in Wisconsin vote Democratic than Republican, it results in almost two-thirds of the legislature being Republican. It may tilt to more than two-thirds this year, which would mean that the Republican-controlled legislature could override vetoes by a Democratic governor and pass laws that would tilt the playing field even more. In this way, Wisconsin may become permanently controlled by Republicans, even though they are the minority party. Isn’t this unconstitutional? Can’t the Supreme Court stop it? It is, and the Supreme Court could put an end to it, but the right-wing-controlled Court has sent a clear message that it won’t interfere.