The gold-standard reform is the Fair Representation Act, introduced in Congress by Rep. Don Beyer (D-Va.). It would slay the gerrymander once and for all by eliminating winner-takes-all, single-member districts entirely. Instead it would create large, multi-member districts with representatives chosen via ranked-choice voting, in which voters choose more than one candidate and indicate which they consider their first, second and third choice as a representative. (Maine’s experiment with ranked-choice voting worked well on Tuesday.)
Democrats will also likely focus heavily on climate change, countering the president, who recently said he believes humans aren’t the main driver of climate change. The House Science, Space and Technology Committee is likely to “maintain a really strong emphasis on Earth science,” panel member Don Beyer, a Virginia Democrat, told us, adding that “it was NASA that figured out that climate change was an issue in the first place.” Johnson pledged this week to “restore the credibility of the Science Committee as a place where science is respected and recognized as a crucial input to good policymaking.” Needless to say, the environmental lobby was crowing in anticipation of the new leadership.
Representing the people of Virginia’s 8th congressional district is a wonderful responsibility, and I thank you for twice electing me to the US House. I ask again for your vote this November.
Faced with more data on a warming planet — and the role of human activity in exacerbating the trend — some lawmakers want the party to use its would-be majority to push a bold, sweeping package to hike the cost of carbon emissions. “I do think we need to go big,” said Rep. Don Beyer (D-Va.). “I’m all for incrementalism in policy. We do lots and lots of it, and it’s a good way to move forward. But this situation is so serious that we can’t do it in little steps.”