To qualify for State Runner-up, Jack placed 2nd in the Western Region.
Jack Rosenthal’s map was clean, logical, and clearly non-gerrymandered as he worked to create competitive districts. His essay reflected his values and depth of understanding and earned him the highest compactness score in this regional group.
I first learned about Draw the Lines when Rachel Colker and her assistant came to my local library. They told me what Draw the Lines was and explained the different values that people take into account when drawing a congressional district map. My Advanced Placement U.S. government class had also been discussing gerrymandering, and our opinions on it, so I decided to participate in this competition.
Equal population between districts was very important to me, as it allows everyone's vote to be worth the same amount, and helps ensure equal representation. I also wanted some majority/minority districts as it allows minorities to have people representing their views in government. Another goal of mine was to take away party advantage, to have the amount of districts controlled by each party be reflective of the actual population.
I found online that there is about one district's worth of population more registered Democrats than Republicans in Pennsylvania. Because of this, I made one more Democratic district than Republican.
One challenge I had when making my first map was making majority/minority districts. It wasn't happening on its own, so when I started this map I made two majority/minority districts first. Another challenge was meeting my values while having relatively compact districts. I was able to do this by first making compact districts and then adjusting groups of population to meet my goals.