Definition of gerrymander in English:

gerrymander

Line breaks: ger¦ry|man¦der
Pronunciation: /ˈdʒɛrɪˌmandə
 
/
(British also jerrymander)

verb

[with object] (often as noun gerrymandering)
  • 1Manipulate the boundaries of (an electoral constituency) so as to favour one party or class.
    More example sentences
    • He said the party had impoverished its supporters and predicted that they would turn against the ruling party, no matter how the constituency boundaries were gerrymandered.
    • Politicians have come to see manipulation of the vote much as they see gerrymandering boundaries of voting districts - all part of the electoral game.
    • If anything, it reinforced perceptions that the board and the ANC were simply gerrymandering provincial boundaries to suit short-term political ends.
  • 1.1Achieve (a result) by gerrymandering: an attempt to gerrymander the election result
    More example sentences
    • A gerrymandered election does not make for a democracy.

noun

Back to top  
  • An instance of gerrymandering.
    More example sentences
    • As Polsby points out, the art of the gerrymander is another instance with respect to which the constitutional order has been turned on its head.
    • In a gerrymander in 1923, Unionists wrested control from Nationalists, an arrangement reinforced in the 1930s.
    • Despite a gerrymander, the number of opposition seats rose from 22 to 45, mostly at the expense of the ruling party.

Derivatives

gerrymanderer

noun
More example sentences
  • It's possible the court will find that this time the gerrymanderers in North Carolina have simply gone too far.
  • A successful gerrymanderer begins by assuming that his party has a certain amount of support statewide; he then apportions that support strategically among individual districts.
  • Without it, gerrymanderers armed with sophisticated technology and facing few real constraints could run wild, causing minority representation in Congress to shrink dramatically.

Origin

early 19th century: from the name of Governor Elbridge Gerry of Massachusetts + salamander, from the supposed similarity between a salamander and the shape of a new voting district on a map drawn when he was in office (1812), the creation of which was felt to favour his party; the map (with claws, wings, and fangs added) was published in the Boston Weekly Messenger, with the title The Gerry-Mander.

More definitions of gerrymander

Definition of gerrymander in:

Get more from Oxford Dictionaries

Subscribe to remove ads and access premium resources

Word of the day skosh
Pronunciation: skōSH
noun
a small amount; a little