Partisan ploy overshadows Elbridge Gerry's legacy

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The man known for one of the most partisan practices in American politics eventually quit government for a time over partisanship.

Elbridge Gerry was once an accomplished statesman devoted to his country, but nearly 200 years after his death, his legacy is overshadowed by the tactic that bears his name.

It's called "gerrymandering," and it means redrawing congressional districts, often in odd shapes, for the sake of political gain.

The term was coined after Gerry, as the Massachusetts governor, approved an obscure redistricting plan ahead of the 1812 elections that helped Republicans hold onto power in the legislature.

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