- U.S. Politics. the dividing of a state, county, etc., into election districts so as to give one political party a majority in many districts while concentrating the voting strength of the other party into as few districts as possible.
- U.S. Politics. to subject (a state, county, etc.) to a gerrymander.
Origin of gerrymander
Examples from the Web for gerrymander
It was from this incident that the word "gerrymander," so often heard in politics in these days, took its name.The Greater Republic
Consequently, every apportionment act involves more or less of the gerrymander.
Under such a system all unfairness would disappear, and the gerrymander would be impossible.
He illustrates a gerrymander which actually made one Democratic vote equal to five Republican votes.
The gerrymander is not produced by the iniquity of parties, it is the outcome of the district system.
- to divide the constituencies of (a voting area) so as to give one party an unfair advantage
- to manipulate or adapt to one's advantage
- an act or result of gerrymandering
Word Origin and History for gerrymander
1812 as both a noun and verb, American English, from Elbridge Gerry + (sala)mander. Gerry, governor of Massachusetts, was lampooned when his party redistricted the state in a blatant bid to preserve an Antifederalist majority. One Essex County district resembled a salamander, and a newspaper editor dubbed it Gerrymander. Related: Gerrymandered; gerrymandering.
To change the boundaries of legislative districts to favor one party over another. Typically, the dominant party in a state legislature (which is responsible for drawing the boundaries of congressional districts) will try to concentrate the opposing party's strength in as few districts as possible, while giving itself likely majorities in as many districts as possible.