Ohio’s Gerrymandered Congressional Map on Trial
Testimony in wrapped up last week in APRI v. Householder, the case brought by the League of Women Voters of Ohio and the ACLU of Ohio against Ohio’s current gerrymandered congressional map. U.S. Rep. Marci Kaptur was one of several compelling witnesses who spoke of the anti-democratic effects of the gerrymandered map. The outcome is now in the hands of a three-judge panel who are due to rule within weeks.
Plaintiffs from all of Ohio’s 16 U.S. House districts and other impacted parties testified to how the awkward, even humorous, current map is fulfilling its contemptible purpose — to ensure that Republicans will consistently win 12 seats, no matter what election-year momentum exists for either party. -- J. Bennett Guess, Executive Director of the American Civil Liberties Union of Ohio, Op-ed in the Akron Beacon-Journal/Ohio.com.
If the panel of judges rules in favor of the League and the ACLU, new congressional maps would have to the drawn ahead of elections in 2020. However, the ruling would likely to be appealed to the U.S. Supreme Court. Results there might well depend on what happens in two gerrymandering cases due to begin oral arguments at the U.S. Supreme Court on March 26.
Redistricting Cases at the Supreme Court
Next week oral arguments will begin in two landmark redistricting cases that have the potential to end gerrymandering for good. Rucho v. Common Cause is about gerrymandering by the North Carolina General Assembly which is dominated by the GOP. Lamone v. Benisek is a challenge to a Democratic gerrymander in Maryland. Here’s an article about the cases from New York Times.
Join Our Rucho Road Trip! Redistricting reformers from Ohio and around the country are heading to DC to be on the steps of the Supreme Court for Rucho and Lamone. We’d love you to join us!
We have a minivan leaving Columbus early Monday, 3/25. Other drivers are very welcome to carpool with us. If you are interested in joining us or have questions, reply to this email, call Common Cause Ohio's Mia Lewis at (765) 409-4779.
We have activities planned for Monday and Tuesday, 3/25-26, including lobbying for HR1, and hearing from members of Congress about current efforts to end gerrymandering and strengthen democracy. Learn more when you sign up at this link: Road Trip!