• Freedom
  • Innovation
  • Growth

Are Republicans and the Constitution Diluting Minority Votes?

Christopher Ingraham writes “about all things data” for the Washington Post. Based on one of his recent syndicated articles, a better description might be “misleading data in the service of left-wing propaganda.”

Like so many on the left and in the media these days, Ingraham believes the U.S. Constitution and Republican efforts hinder diversity and dilute minority votes. As he puts it, “how structural problems [i.e., the Electoral College] and partisan meddling [i.e., Republican gerrymandering] give White, rural and affluent voters a much bigger voice in the political system.”

According to Ingraham, both have led to “inequalities [that have] have widened in recent years, and in ways that systematically give White, rural and affluent voters a much bigger voice in the political system than non-White, urban and poor Americans.”

If Ingraham’s analysis is correct, we should see some evidence that congressional representation is becoming less diverse, right?

The Pew Research Center—which Ingraham is familiar with, since he worked there before going to the Post—says the current Congress (House and Senate) is “the most racially and ethnically diverse in history. There has been a long-running trend toward more racial and ethnic diversity on Capitol Hill: Each of the previous four Congresses broke the record set by the Congress before it.”


Pew says the current Congress (2019-2021) began with 116 nonwhite lawmakers, an 87 percent increase over the 107th Congress (2001-03). The number of Blacks in the House and Senate increased from 36 to 56, and Hispanics more than doubled, from 19 to 43.
Let me point out that during those nearly 20 years, Republicans have held the White House 12 years and Democrats eight. Republicans controlled the House of Representatives for 14 of those years and the Senate 10 years.
And yet minority representation has steadily increased and reached record levels for the last four Congresses. If Republicans are conspiring with the Constitution to dilute minority representation, they’re doing a darn poor job if it.
But there’s more. Since overt examples of racism are harder to find these days, the left has turned to something called “disparate impact”—i.e., “practices in employment, housing, and other areas that adversely affect one group of people of a protected characteristic more than another, even though rules applied by employers or landlords are formally neutral.”
If Republicans were engaging in practices that dilute minority votes, even if unintentionally, we might see evidence of that in, say, lower Black representation in Congress. Yet at the beginning of the current Congress there were 53 Black members of the House, about 12 percent of the total. The U.S. Census Bureau says that Blacks make up 13.4 percent of the population. Thus the Black congressional representation is almost equal to its portion of the total population.
Over the next few months—and even longer if President Trump wins reelection—we will be seeing lots of articles like Ingraham’s that try to convince voters that both Republicans and our Constitution are stacked against minorities. The actual numbers tell a different story.