House Committee Readies For Redistricting Vote

Many of Ohio's current Congressional districts would change under a plan now before a GOP-controlled House committee.(Photo: www.govtrack.us)
Many of Ohio's current Congressional districts would change under a plan now before a GOP-controlled House committee.(Photo: www.govtrack.us)

An Ohio House committee is expected to vote Wednesday on a Republican-backed plan for remapping the state’s U.S. House districts.

Democrats and voter advocacy groups criticized the map unveiled yesterday. It splits Ohio’s 88 counties in as many as 63 places and creates oddly shaped districts. Among them are a district snaking along Lake Erie from Toledo to Cleveland and a crescent that touches parts of 13 counties.

Ohio State University law professor and election expert Daniel Tokaji also says he’s concerned about the speed at which the map was developed and today’s possible vote.

“This is very worrisome, because if that happens there’s no opportunity for outside groups or interested citizens like me to take a close look at the map and evaluate its partisan fairness,” Tokaji says.

In somewhat of a surprise, the Cleveland district now occupied by Democrat Dennis Kucinich was not dismantled, and the long-time Congressman says he’ll stay in Ohio after flirting with a possible move to Washington state.

The full House is expected to approve the district map this week. The plan would still need Senate approval.

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