Episode 27: Robert Yablon and Gerrylaundering

Photo of Prof. Rob Yablon. He is wearing a suit with a blue tie.A remotely-recorded podcast interview with Associate Professor of Law and Faculty Co-Director of the State Democracy Research Initiative at the University of Wisconsin Law School Robert Yablon (SSRN; Law Repository).

Prof. Yablon (@RobYablon) discusses his newest article, “Gerrylaundering”, recently published in the NYU Law Review. This article introduces the concept of “gerrylaundering” in order to best describe voting district mapmakers’ best efforts to lock in their favorable position by preserving key elements of their existing maps. The article then applies the new term to the existing redistricting discourse to describe how people in power can use this strategy to cement their hold on power in a less radical manner than outright gerrymandering.

Prof. Yablon also discusses how he became interested in this topic and how it’s relevant to Wisconsin, as well as how he came up with the concept of “gerrylaundering” and how it relates to and is different from gerrymandering. He also gives a brief history of gerrymandering. He finishes up the discussion by talking about the techniques that mapmakers use in “gerrylaundering” and comparing them to gerrymandering efforts.

Listen to the Episode

The interview was conducted on July 28, 2022. | 24:26 minutes; published August 25, 2022. Transcript file (PDF).

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