Redistricting Reformers Remember Founding Father and Father of Gerrymandering
Urge Lawmakers and the Constitutional Modernization Commission to Remember Him, Too
COLUMBUS—The Fair Districts = Fair Elections Coalition plans to commemorate the 272nd birthday of one of the Founding Fathers, and creator of the original gerrymander with some birthday cake. (The Coalition planned to take the cake to the Ohio Constitutional Modernization Commission’s meeting but the committee tasked with redistricting reform isn’t taking up the topic at this month’s meeting.)
July marks the third year of the Commission’s review of redistricting reform options. Neither the Legislative Branch and Executive Branch Committee, nor the full commission, has made recommendations about curbing Congressional gerrymandering.
Senate Joint Resolution 2, co-sponsored by Senators Frank LaRose (R-Hudson) and Tom Sawyer (D-Akron) was introduced on July 22, 2015, and has been collecting dust ever since.
Come have some cake and hear from Catherine Turcer of Common Cause Ohio, Camille Wimbish of the Ohio Voter Coalition and student activists Collin Marozzi and Morgan Johnston talk about the need for redistricting reform and plans for a Virtual Lobby Day that will target people with the power to improve democracy by helping us fix the Congressional map.
WHO: The Fair Districts = Fair Elections Coalition
WHAT: Press Conference with birthday cake commemorating Elbridge Gerry’s birth and the 3rd Anniversary of the Constitutional Modernization Commission review of redistricting reform.
WHEN: 11:00 am Thursday, July 14th
WHERE: ProgressOhio’s Press Room, 35 E. Gay St., Suite 404, Columbus 43215
Gerrymandering is more than 200 years old. And the cake will honor a past redistricting reformer, the late Governor and U.S. Senator George Voinovich. Here’s what will festoon the cake
Elbridge Gerry signed the Declaration of Independence but is best known for slicing and dicing Massachusetts Senate districts in 1812 to thwart his political rivals. The Boston Gazette printed a cartoon showing that one of the districts resembled a salamander and called that new creature a gerrymander. Since then, gerrymandering has become the preferred term to describe the drawing of legislative districts for political advantage. Ohio Secretary of State Jon Husted describes gerrymandering as “the fractured foundation on which our legislative branch of government is built.”
Live Video Feed: You can watch the press conference online or on your mobile phone by following @ProgressOhio on Twitter or Periscope. Search for and participate with tweets about this event by using #CongressToo
For More Information, contact: Catherine Turcer, 614-579-5509