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Gerrymandering

2010

NR
3.8 out of 5 stars (6) IMDb 7.3/10

Right now, across the country, our two major political parties are gearing up for a once-a-decade war whose winner will control Congress for the next ten years, and possibly more.

Starring:
Dave Aronberg, Ben Barnes
Runtime:
1 hour, 17 minutes

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Product Details

Genres Documentary
Director Jeff Reichert
Starring Dave Aronberg, Ben Barnes
Supporting actors Gray Davis, Howard Dean, Kathay Feng, Bob Graham, Susan Lerner, Justin Levitt, Alan S. Lowenthal, Ed Rollins, Arnold Schwarzenegger, Peter Wagner, Jeff Wice, Pete Wilson
Studio Snagfilms
MPAA rating NR (Not Rated)
Purchase rights Stream instantly Details
Format Amazon Video (streaming online video)

Other Formats

Customer Reviews

Top Customer Reviews

By K. Harris HALL OF FAMETOP 100 REVIEWER on October 23, 2012
Format: DVD
The timely new documentary from Jeff Reichert "Gerrymandering" makes one wonder just what has gone so wrong with the American political party system. As a form of legislative self interest, incumbents are part of the process that rezones voting districts to all but eliminate potential competition. Whether targeting areas by politics, by race, or simply in response to an individual threat--the movie offers ample examples that will mystify and disturb you. This is a truly bipartisan arena, though, for when you are the alleged victim of gerrymandering (named after Massachusetts Governor Elbridge Gerry) then you become its vocal opponent. If, however, you benefit from it (whether directly or indirectly), it's simply a well established part of the "democratic" process. The movie covers lots of historical ground and in stock footage, a lot of famous faces speak about the process in extremely critical ways.

The narrative of "Gerrymandering" revolves around California's 2008 fight to pass Proposition 11 at the state elections. Activist Kathay Feng, who has been in this battle through many voting cycles, spearheads a grassroots movement to take the redistricting power away from the presiding politicians that can misappropriate its impact. One of this year's (as opposed to prior elections) biggest supporters is Governor Arnold Schwarzenegger. He is featured prominently within the film speaking for reform. As this part of the documentary moves toward election day, Reichert gives us other great examples (some modern, some not) of where the process has resulted in dubious outcomes. Some examples: The national headline story of about Tom DeLay and the missing busload of Texas Democrats as well as a look at President Obama's ascendency.
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Format: DVD
There is a lot most Americans do not know about politics. Even this (but very important) concept of Gerrymandering is one that should have been more explosive in the past.

Every decade, the census occurs. With that information, politicians (both Republican and Democratic) engage in a legal form of voter manipulation. In other words, they rezone their voting districts to their advantage - the people most likely to vote for them in upcoming elections. It's legal and dastardly. Winners control Congress for the next ten years. That means 2020 is the next time this can occur. California passed Proposition 11 that kept it in check, oddly, with the support of none other than that `political character', Arnold Swartzenegger.

Politicians don't need to cheat with ballot stuffing or voting machine manipulation. They can simply redraw districts to suit their reelection. Senator Obama was elected this way in Illinois. He changed his districting from the south of Chicago to the wealthy coast of Lake Michigan. It is legal.

Gerrymandering was named after Massachusetts Governor Elbridge Gerry. In 1812, Governor Gerry signed a bill that redistricted Massachusetts to benefit his Democratic-Republican Party. When mapped, one of the contorted districts in the Boston area was said to resemble the shape of a salamander. Some of the maps shown in this film look like a Rorschach test.

The entire section on how a prison community (prisoners cannot vote) can be easily swayed to one politician with literally less than a handful of votes is stunning.

This film is only 77 minutes long, but it is packed with easy to understand information, graphs, interviews and clever shenanigans. If this film was made before 2010, we might see a different Congress today. Check it out. It's just another amazing look into American politics and something every American should know about.

DVD kindly supplied by 'Passion River' films.
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Format: Amazon Video Verified Purchase
A great documentary on our broken system of electing representatives. This video will take you inside the history and process of gerrymandering.
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