Over the weekend, the Akron Beacon-Journal published this editorial on the unfair, uncompetitive, politics-driven redistricting map rammed through the Ohio House by Republican leadership. Excerpts from the editorial follow:
“After holding multiple hearings on congressional redistricting, the job requiring a reduction in the number of Ohio seats from 18 to 16, Republicans last week sprung their plan, never before seen by Democrats, let alone voters. Introduced Tuesday in the House, the redistricting bill passed two days later, along party lines, Republicans using their majority to hustle it through.
“An independent group called the Ohio Campaign for Accountable Redistricting put forward several [alternative] versions, a winning map generated through an open competition that awarded points for compactness and competition.
“How different the results were.
“Under the group’s formula, just six of the current 18 districts are considered competitive. The measure is a generous one, requiring no more than a 10-point spread between the parties. Most challengers would find that difficult. Still, under the right circumstances, one could break through.
“The plan passed by the Ohio House would make matters worse, even though presidential elections in the state swing back and forth. Just two districts met even the broad definition of competitive.
“Then consider the winning plan from the Ohio Campaign for Accountable Redistricting. Drafted by Mike Fortner, a Republican state representative from Illinois, it resulted in 11 competitive districts, all well within the 10-point spread.
“Over 50 maps were submitted to the competition won by Fortner. If House Republicans had submitted theirs, it would have scored dead last, testimony to the triumph of raw partisanship.”
Read the full article here.