In a previous column (“Something must be done to balance power,” The Daily News, July 24), I argued that since Reynolds v. Sims forces state senate districts to be proportional to population, large urban areas will control those states that contain these high-population areas, so their small towns and rural areas will be forced to live under urban socialist regimes.

The official definition of a “large urban area” is a metropolitan statistical area.

Texas has five large statistical areas:

Dallas-Fort Worth: 13 counties, population 7.5 million

Houston: Nine counties, population 6. 9 million

San Antonio: Eight counties, population 2.5 million

Austin: Five counties, population 2.1 million

El Paso: two counties, population 845,553

These statistical areas are composed of 37 counties with a population of more than 20 million. The state of Texas is composed of 254 counties with a population of 28.7 million.

These five statistical areas are represented by 109 House Districts. The Texas House has 150 districts; therefore, these statistical areas control 73 percent of the votes. This is how it was meant to be; House membership proportional to population.

However, in order to have meaningful power sharing between large statistical areas and rural areas, senate districts cannot be forced to be proportional to population, because each county needs to be a state senate district. If this arrangement was used, the five statistical areas would only have 15 percent of the votes in the Texas Senate, which would give small towns and rural areas meaningful power.

Unfortunately, since Reynolds does not allow each county to be a senate district, there are currently only 31 senate districts and 26 of them are contained within these five statistical areas. This means that these statistical areas control 84 percent of the votes in the Senate; almost six times more than they would if each county was a senate district.

If political power was shared between the large-statistical-area urban socialist voting bloc and a rural traditionalist voting bloc, they would be forced to find ways to compromise. But since large-statistical-area legislators have complete control of the state; they set the agenda. This has allowed urban socialism to completely dominate rural traditionalism throughout the state.

Many may believe that this cannot possibly be true, because 55 percent of the House and 61 percent of the Senate is held by Republicans, but many Republican legislators give lip service to “traditional values” while actually supporting urban socialism. This explains why many voters are routinely disappointed with the “Republican Legislature.” Clearly, if the structure of the Texas Legislature isn’t changed dramatically, the domination of urban socialism will only get worse.

People in at least five states (Illinois, California, Washington, Nevada, and New York) now realize that Reynolds is the primary reason why their states have become controlled by their large statistical areas, so they’re making serious efforts to end their domination. Will anyone in Texas do the same?

Someone needs to file a lawsuit to reverse Reynolds.

David Stanowski lives in Galveston.

Locations

(37) comments

Mike Zeller

No Thanks, Mr Stanowski. Equal representation for state government is just fine with me. "One person, One vote". Land area doesn"t get a vote.

Gary Scoggin

What in the world is “urban socialism”? Is it when people in cities vote for someone you don’t like?

Bailey Jones

Glad to see that Texas Republicans are finally hopping on that great big socialist train to the new world order. [rolleyes]

Carlos Ponce

As long as there are intelligent people running this state, the state of Texas will not turn Socialist.

Bailey Jones

But, but, but - the domination of urban socialism is coming!!! I read it in the paper, it must be true.

David Hardee



The issue in this article is the Megatropolis’s population having an overwhelming effect in elections. No one has disputed one person one vote.

The debate is whether the structure of the United States remains a collective of states with their degree of self governance or should the Federal government become monolithic controller. A deep thinking critical analysis would result in the debate being on we want to continue as a democratic Republic or become a society on the socialist train toward a “new world” order.



Let us explore just one very important aspect of a society that is homogenized as a socialist democracy - FOOD. No one can argue that food is essential component in the life of a human. No one can argue that in the production of food land matters. Let’s debate whether those who produce the food and manage more land then the all Megatropolis’s together should have representation to equal degree to the population that depends on and consumes their product. This food issue was only one of the similar type issues debated by the founding fathers. They understood the interconnection and disparity because they had seen what happens when a Megatropolis is able to overwhelm and dictate (monarchies). Starvation is the most disastrous problem and is prevalent in all socialist societies. Starvation Examples: North Korea, the nonexistent Soviet union, the previous democracy Venezuela, all of the African continent except Algeria, Indonesia, mid east, etc...

The new world order advocates want – no borders – no shame – enabling self inflicted addiction –dissolution of family responsibility – socialistic government control across the planet population - utopia. In the bowels of the United States growls those simpleminded progressive liberals espousing socialism. These malcontent progress liberals gather in the big tent of the “great society.” From the great society (Federal government) will flow all they need. Surrender- become an ameba to hope of a benevolent utopia is what you pay for a ticket on the socialist train to a new world order.

Our democratic republic – one man one vote – Electoral College – state, district representation is messy and produced the best hope of humanity. But all of us get a path to express our preference.

MAGA and vote wisely for humanity and not your personal agenda.

Dan Freeman

Check your dollar bill it already reads Novus ordo seclorum . So the U.S. from the beginning was a light to the nations proclaiming a New World Order. We have recognized this was good because Annuit cœptis,

David Hardee

All "new world orders" are not equal. Some have proven disastrous (nazi, shinto are two of the worst) communism and socialism are both proven disastrous for the populations under their control. Your latin mottos refer to "providence" - synonyms: fate, destiny, nemesis, kismet, God's will, divine intervention, predestination, predetermination; " none of these mottos/proclamations are prominent/adoptable by socialism.

The light of the USA and its "new world order" have proven "best hope for humanity".

Your socialist based "new world order" has historical record of disasters.

Jim Casey

"Urban" means black, Mexican, yuppie, and gay. "Rural" apparently means "Petticoat Junction" and "Green Acres."



Don't be shy about your prejudices and fantasies.

Bailey Jones

Green Acres - A New York lawyer and an immigrant socialite? No, I think he's more likely channeling The Andy Griffith Show.

Carlos Ponce

Jim Casey posts, "Urban" means black, Mexican, yuppie, and gay." Limiting "urban" to just those subgroups is exposing YOUR prejudices, Jim. Travel into an urban environment such as Houston and you will see many who do not fit your stereotype.

Emile Pope

Who were outnumbered by country folks...

Michael Woodson

why does the minority population of "rural" voters need so much power over everyone else? Are we going to do this for other minorities?

Bailey Jones

The minority population of rural voters needs more power than everyone else because they are the minority. How else will they be able to exercise control over the rest of us??? You sound like one of those radicals who wants everything to be decided democratically. Rural Texans are special people who deserve special rights because they're the ONLY people left who believe that rural Texans are special people who deserve special rights.

(And no - of course we won't do this for any other minority - that's not a traditional value.)

Carlos Ponce

"why does the minority population of 'rural' voters need so much power over everyone else?" If you eat, your food must come from SOMEWHERE - either a farm or the sea. If farmer Jones isn't happy it's reflected in food availabilty. Same goes for the fisherman.

Ron Shelby

How do you get that Urban is socialist? Nearly all of the countries wealth is concentrated in urban areas (Donald trump does not live on a farm in Waco). The wealthy tend to be fairly conservative. Alternatively, I know a LOT of very poor farmers who want and need socialistic type programs from congress.

Bailey Jones

Urban used to be Republican code for "black". But Trump has made being a racist so uncool that now the fear word is "socialism".

Carlos Ponce

"Urban used to be Republican code for 'black'". It never was. And what is classified as "Urban" music is listened to in several subgroups.

Emile Pope

It still is...

Ron Shelby

Someone also might argue that since the large statistical areas control the wealth, they should also run the show.

Steve Fouga

I just drove across the width of Texas. I saw nothing worthy of exercising any power or control in any place other than Houston, San Antonio, and El Paso. Why? Because that's where the people are. Texas has plenty of compelling scenery, but that doesn't warrant a vote.

Bailey Jones

Cow lives matter.

Carlos Ponce

Cow lives matter but dead cow tastes great ! In the Bible we read of celebrations where they eat the fatted calf. YUM!

Miceal O'Laochdha

"... small towns and rural areas will be forced to live under urban socialist regimes." Holy moly, that phrase sounds like Joe Stalin is back! What is a humble Trotskyite to do? Maybe they will exhume Joe McCarthy next.

Don Schlessinger

Bernie will replace Joe Stalin. Joe is his hero.

Ted Gillis

Urban Socialism! What a crock.

I think I found one those in my cowboy boots.

Stuart Crouch

Wowza! For a fella that carries an uncanny resemblance to Mr. Rogers, you sure don't seem like the guy that would sing, "Won't you be my neighbor".



Reading between your lines (again, trying hard to believe that you aren't racist) it is easy to see that you recognize that your ideology self-identifies you as a willful minority in this state, country and quite probably the planet. Sorry, but 1950's America is long gone, and if you pine for those days and their simplistic way of life, you will not recapture that here and you certainly won't convince very many educated folk to follow you in your cause.



This country, and life in general, is about change and our society's adaptation to those changes. One's ability to adapt to such changes is directly linked to their overall happiness, if not their ability to function and survive.



One person, one vote is as pure and pristine of a method of representation of who we are as a country. You're not fooling too many with your protests of a system that is both fair and equitable and has proven to be quite effective.



Casting aspersions upon those that are different than yourself and your beliefs, says far more about you and your issues than it does about them. Label them with whatever term that the fright-right fear-mongers come up with (like the dreaded "S"-word you used) in a rather pale attempt to cast them in an unfavorable light.



Know this; you are losing and will go the go the way of the dinosaur if you cannot accept and adapt to an ever-evolving world. Not only do you disparage those anywhere left of your comfort zone, you even profess your disdain for some of your political own, claiming them to be something akin to RINO's. Always a good time to watch as that party feasts upon itself.



Good luck in your plight; I have a pretty good idea of how its going to go for ya. [pirate]

Wayne Holt

An alternative interpretation:

Reading between your lines (again, trying hard to believe that you aren't racist) ***Ad hominem right out of the starting blocks. Deduct 10 points.

Sorry, but 1950's America is long gone, and if you pine for those days and their simplistic way of life, you will not recapture that here and you certainly won't convince very many educated folk to follow you in your cause.



This country, and life in general, is about change and our society's adaptation to those changes. One's ability to adapt to such changes is directly linked to their overall happiness, if not their ability to function and survive. ***By most standards of social good, the 50s were infinitely more beneficial to average Americans, with the ability of the majority to support a decent lifestyle on one income. We have more violence, substance abuse, family deterioration, stagnant economic opportunities and general social decay now than in the 50s--which also saw the beginnings of the Civil Rights Movement to correct the racist legacy that was present. An African-American auto worker in Detroit could afford a middle-class life as the sole breadwinner. Now, MBAs work as baristas. You equate change with progress. Not only is there no basis for that assumption, the historical record shows the opposite in the US over the last 50 or so years.

Casting aspersions upon those that are different than yourself and your beliefs, says far more about you and your issues than it does about them.***See my first comment. The irony is apparent; no more need be said.

Know this; you are losing and will go the go the way of the dinosaur if you cannot accept and adapt to an ever-evolving world.***Again, dripping with unintended irony. The dinosaurs went the way of the dinosaur because of rapid, destructive change in their environment. In essence, you're blaming the dinosaurs for being in the place where the meteor wanted to land. See the parallels there?

Emile Pope

When you say average Americans in the 50s, what’s your definition? And you forget to mention the tax rates on the wealthy or the strong unions and infrastructure improvements made back then. Also the governance capable leaders instead of unqualified hacks and game show hosts with a long record of corruption and unethical business practices. Guess you forgot...

Carlos Ponce

" tax rates" of the 50s.

"There is a common misconception that high-income Americans are not paying much in taxes compared to what they used to. Proponents of this view often point to the 1950s, when the top federal income tax rate was 91 percent for most of the decade. However, despite these high marginal rates, the top 1 percent of taxpayers in the 1950s only paid about 42 percent of their income in taxes. As a result, the tax burden on high-income households today is only slightly lower than what these households faced in the 1950s."

"The 91 percent bracket of 1950 only applied to households with income over $200,000 (or about $2 million in today’s dollars). Only a small number of taxpayers would have had enough income to fall into the top bracket – fewer than 10,000 households, according to an article in The Wall Street Journal."

"Even among households that did fall into the 91 percent bracket, the majority of their income was not necessarily subject to that top bracket. After all, the 91 percent bracket only applied to income above $200,000, not to every single dollar earned by households."

"Finally, it is very likely that the existence of a 91 percent bracket led to significant tax avoidance and lower reported income. There are many studies that show that, as marginal tax rates rise, income reported by taxpayers goes down. As a result, the existence of the 91 percent bracket did not necessarily lead to significantly higher revenue collections from the top 1 percent."

https://taxfoundation.org/taxes-on-the-rich-1950s-not-high/

Emile Pope

Just more garbage. If the top tax rate in the 50s wasn’t being paid when it was 90% then imagine what it is s like when it’s not that high today. Your statements are unsupported...

Carlos Ponce

Not supported Emile? Did you bother to check out the website provided?

How about this statement from Leftis Slate?

"So the real tax rates rich Americans paid in the 1950s may not have been so stratospherically high as some progressives assume. But they also may have helped create a more egalitarian society. That seems worth considering. "

https://slate.com/business/2017/08/the-history-of-tax-rates-for-the-rich.html

or this one:

"The bottomline: FDR’s top tax bracket was over 90%, but people didn’t pay the top federal income tax rate in that era, like in any era, people pay an effective rate (which is always less than the top tax bracket rate in a progressive tax system)."

"In terms of the federal income tax, rather than paying the full 90%, the top effective federal income tax rate was closer to 40% – 60% on average in the 1940s and 50s (the effective rate being what the highest earners actually pay in federal income taxes after deductions and with marginal brackets considered). Meanwhile, the average worker would have paid around 20% and many low wage workers paid less in this same time."

http://factmyth.com/factoids/the-top-income-tax-bracket-used-to-be-90-percent-or-more/

Emile Pope

So if the highest rate in the 50s was 90% but people only paid 40-60%, what are they paying now that the highest rate is around 40? The only thing going up is the deficit and the National Debt...

Carlos Ponce

The effective interest rate is lower given deductions and exemptions. Everyone is different dependent on these factors.

Bailey Jones

It's just the collapse of traditional American white privilege.



"Though wise men at their end know dark is right,

Because their words had forked no lightning they

Do not go gentle into that good night."



Rage on old white men - rage against the dying of your light.

Miceal O'Laochdha

Repurposing Dylan Thomas? Very creative...I'm sure he would be thrilled.

Dan Freeman

Mr. Stanowski gets it wrong from his first paragraph where he states: The official definition of a “large urban area” is a metropolitan statistical area. No, there are both Metro and Micro Statistical areas. These are defined as based on a CBSA [Core Based Statistical Area] that must contain at least one urban area of 10,000 or more population. Each metropolitan statistical area must have at least one urbanized area of 50,000 or more inhabitants. Each micropolitan statistical area must have at least one urban cluster of at least 10,000 but less than 50,000 population.

Under the standards, the county (or counties) in which at least 50 percent of the population resides within urban areas of 10,000 or more population, or that contain at least 5,000 people residing within a single urban area of 10,000 or more population, is identified as a "central county" (counties). Additional "outlying counties" are included in the CBSA if they meet specified requirements of commuting to or from the central counties. Counties or equivalent entities form the geographic "building blocks" for metropolitan and micropolitan statistical areas throughout the United States and Puerto Rico.

There is no such thing as a “large urban area” definition.

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