Does gerrymandering for racial purposes lead to apathy and low African-American voter turnout?

A few days ago I wrote about the attempts by the Justice Department to force  the city of Kinston, North Carolina to label candidates by party affiliation. The Justice Department adopted a paternalistic (and insulting) rationale when they justified their action as being necessary to insure that African-Americans can elect candidates of their choice - identified by the department as those who are Democrats and are almost exclusively African-American. The department ruled that white voters will only vote for African-Americans if they are Democrats and that the city cannot eliminate party affiliations on the ballot because that would violate African-American voters' right to elect candidates (presumably African-American) that they want.   (my colleague, Clarice Feldman, also has an article on the controversy). The facts are: African-Americans are a majority of registered voters in the heavily Democratic community but low voter turnout often makes them a minority of actual...(Read Full Post)