Slaying the Gerrymander

The 2018 elections promise to shakeup the state and national political scenes, starting with a ballot issue in May that could go a long way toward fixing Ohio’s system of gerrymandered Congressional districts.

COHHIO has supported the Fair Districts = Fair Elections coalition’s effort to reform the way state legislators redraw Congressional district maps to maximize their partisan advantage. Last year, the coalition launched a signature-gathering campaign to put a constitutional amendment on the ballot after years of being ignored by the state legislature.

Then, after realizing that the Fair Districts proposal really was gathering steam, legislators met with the campaign and hashed out a compromise that would require significant bipartisan support to approve new Congressional maps. Earlier this month, members of both parties voted overwhelmingly to place Senate Joint Resolution 5 before voters on the May 8 statewide ballot.

If approved by a majority of voters, the proposed constitutional amendment would make the redistricting process set to take place after the 2020 Census significantly fairer by requiring input from members of the minority party and preventing mapmakers from unnecessarily dividing communities. For more details, visit the Fair Districts = Fair Elections website.