Friday, May 27, 2022

Play

High gas prices are not slowing down Memorial Day travel, early voting starts tomorrow in Nevada, and Oregon activists seek accountability for dioxin contamination in low-income Eugene.

Play

Education Secretary Cardona calls for action after the Texas massacre, Republicans block a domestic terrorism vote, and Secretary of State Blinken calls China the greatest challenger to U.S. and its allies.

Play

High-speed internet is being used to entice remote workers to rural communities, Georgia is offering Black women participation in a guaranteed income initiative, and under-resourced students in Montana get a boost toward graduation.

Ohio's Redistricting Saga Continues

Play

Thursday, January 27, 2022   

There's another chapter in Ohio's redistricting saga. Several groups filed legal challenges asking the Ohio Supreme Court to declare revised state legislative district maps invalid, arguing they violate the Ohio Constitution's partisan fairness mandates.

After the state's first maps were declared unconstitutional, the Ohio Redistricting Commission went back to the drawing board and approved new maps Saturday.

Maki Somosot, communications and narrative director for the Ohio Organizing Collaborative, said the map drawers identified districts in the original maps leaning slightly Republican, and revised the lines just enough to create razor-thin Democratic-leaning districts.

"This is just another example of our legislators putting their own party over people's interests," Somosot asserted. "At the end of the day, if we're going to build a democracy that works for all of us, that means that we need to pick our leaders and not the other way around."

Gov. Mike DeWine, who sits on the Ohio Redistricting Commission, indicated the revised map is as close to proportional as possible, and argued it conformed to all other provisions required by the constitution. The commission has until noon on Friday to respond to the objections.

Ohio's voting breakdown is 54% Republican to 46% Democrat.

Collin Marozzi, deputy policy director for the ACLU of Ohio, explains the revised maps give Republicans a 57-42 advantage in the House and a 20-13 advantage in the Senate.

"There really is a tilt, a very intentional skew, to put the Democratic seats in a much more precarious position rather than the Republican districts which have been drawn to ensure a level of safety for those members," Marozzi contended.

Meanwhile, the Ohio General Assembly is tasked with redrawing congressional districts after the state Supreme Court found the map violated partisan gerrymandering rules. Marozzi noted redistricting is now a hot-button issue among voters.

"The maps that are ultimately adopted from one state to another in the aggregate has the ability to change the party in power in the U.S. House of Representatives," Marozzi pointed out. "And people have rightly begun to view redistricting as a linchpin for democracy."

Alabama, Alaska, Florida, Michigan and Texas are among the states where there are also legal challenges over newly drawn districts.


get more stories like this via email
Florida Democrats want to expand the state's "red flag" law, to allow family members to initiate confiscating weapons. Currently, only law enforcement can take guns away from those who pose a danger to themselves and others. (jarmoluk/Pixabay)

Social Issues

Democrats in the Florida Legislature are reviving calls for stricter gun-control laws, following the school shooting in Uvalde, Texas. Florida's …


Environment

This week, in honor of World Otter Day, conservation groups are looking to raise awareness about efforts to restore sea otters along more areas of …

Health and Wellness

With the unofficial start to summer, pools around Ohio are opening this Memorial Day weekend, and when it comes to swim time, experts encourage …


Aside from health risks, environmental officials say harmful algae blooms pose a threat to Iowa's water recreation industry. When beaches and other access points are temporarily shut down, it discourages plans for boating or swimming. (Adobe Stock)

Environment

Memorial Day weekend marks the beginning of water recreation season, and before putting on a swimsuit, Iowa environmental experts say being mindful …

Social Issues

As the nation processes the horrific shooting in Uvalde, where 19 children and two teachers were killed, teachers' unions across Illinois and America …

Gas prices are higher on average in western Montana than they are in eastern Montana. (Vinícius Bacarin/Adobe Stock)

Social Issues

The cost of heading out of town this Memorial Day weekend will be higher than past years, with higher gas prices and inflation hitting travelers…

Health and Wellness

One of Connecticut's largest health systems launched a new resource in Hartford this month, aimed at helping patients access healthy and nutritious …

Environment

New York state lawmakers are weighing two bills which would grant utilities more vertical market power, a move proponents argued will help the state …

 

Phone: 303.448.9105 Toll Free: 888.891.9416 Fax: 208.247.1830 Your trusted member- and audience-supported news source since 1996 Copyright © 2021