Due to the unfettered gerrymandering of districts that the Republicans did behind closed doors, it is almost assured that the state GOP will continue to control the Legislature for the next 10 years.
Republicans made sure that as many Democrats were squeezed into as few districts as possible, leaving the majority of the districts as easy wins for Republicans.
In this past Nov. 6 election, the Republicans took control of both state houses with 200,000 fewer statewide votes than the Democrats received.
From Urban Milwaukee, online magazine, on Wednesday 11/21/2012:
"Republicans won 56 of the 76 contested Assembly seats in the Nov. 6 election. That’s 74 percent of the seats — which they won with just 52 percent of the 2.2 million votes.
The Democratic Party of Wisconsin furnished the Center with data showing that if uncontested races were included in the analysis, Democrats actually received 200,000 more Assembly votes than Republicans. Most uncontested races were in Democratic districts."
“There is no question — none — that the recent redistricting effort distorted the vote,” said Ken Mayer, a professor of political science at the University of Wisconsin-Madison. “Nobody takes seriously the notion that the legislative plan for congressional districts wasn’t politically motivated.”
What does this mean for Wisconsin voters and government?
First of all, since all foreseeable Legislative races for the next 10 years are virtually assured of having Republicans controlling both houses, the only way for Democrats to have any input is to concentrate on statewide races, which are decided by the total popular vote.
Statewide races include among others, governor, state attorney general, Supreme Court justices, and both U.S. Senate seats.
Unfortunately, even if the Democrats are successful in electing Democrats as governor, if the Republicans follow their federal strategy of obstructionism and non-compromise, as they have with President Obama, gridlock may become the Wisconsin government status quo.