For the second time this week, the Ohio Supreme Court issued a 4-3 opinion that destroyed a bunch of politically ranked districts in Buckeye State.
An opinion piece on Friday obliterated a series of Republican-designed boundaries that were created to encapsulate federal congressional districts. Earlier in the week, the state’s highest court knock down the counties designed for state legislators in both houses of the Ohio bicameral legislature.
As previously commented, Chief Justice Maureen O’Connor, a Republican, once again joined the Supreme Court Democrats in disintegrating GOP-designed maps. Court Democrats, Michael P. Donnelly, Melody J. Stewart, and Jennifer L. Brunner, join O’Connor to form the majority. Other Republicans of the court (Sharon L. Kennedy, Patrick F. Fischer, and Richard Patrick “Pat” DeWine) issued a dissent, 39 pages long, roughly matching the 42-page majority opinion (and partly concurring) in terms of volume, but without legal weight.
The court’s opinion is grounded in the recently enacted amendments and supplements to the Ohio Constitution. Article XI has been amended; Article XIX be adopted. One section Article XIX explicitly forbids a county map to “unduly support or not support a political party or incumbents” – depending on how the map is issued. Again section Article XIX states that the state legislature “must not unduly divide the units of government” and must “give[e] preference is to keep all, in order of name, the counties, then the towns, and the municipal corporations” when dividing the land into political constituencies.
Justice Donnelly wrote for the majority. He began by waxing about the importance of voting and quoting the famous American poet Walt Whitman do like that:
In our representative democracy, power always belongs to the people. Their power has never been more profound than it is when it comes to their ballot at the ballot box. Those whom the people elect to represent them are given temporary authority to discharge their responsibilities under the Constitution and laws of the United States and the state of Ohio, but real power is exercised by the people when they do so. exercising its voting rights over Walt Whitman celebrated as “America’s Choice Day,” when its focus was not on choice but on the act of choosing.
Gerrymandering is the opposite of representative democracy. It is an abuse of power — by any political party that has the control to draw geographical boundaries for congressional and state offices to be elected and engaged in such activity — that exaggerates a how to strategically power the power of voters who tend to support the favored party while reducing the power of voters who tend to favor the opposing party. Its particular appeal is that it locks down the political power of the controlling party while locking out any other party or executive office that serves as a check and balance of power. An ardent supporter of parliamentary redistribution and separation of powers redistribution declaration “A great event”, joyfully declares: “District redistricting is like a reverse election! Usually, voters choose politicians. In redistricting, politicians must choose voters! ”
Donnelly later noted that voters’ decisions to change the state constitution should have been a clear signal to political leaders that “more of the same is not an option” when refer to the map of the county.
“Despite the passage of Article XIX, the evidence in these cases makes it clear beyond any doubt that the General Assembly failed to heed the call for justification sent by Ohio voters to cease political activism. ,” continued the majority.
Carrying on with business as usual, with no apparent regard for the reforms contemplated in Article XIX, the General Assembly issued Annex No 258 in 2021, which was adopted by a simple majority and approved by the General Assembly. Governor Mike DeWine signs it into law on November 20, 2021. The bill leads to areas of undue political bias — whether viewed through the lens of expert statistical analysis or by adopts simple common sense—at least not more likely to favor Republican candidates than the 2011 reallocation that spurred Ohio’s constitutional reform.
The court held that Buckeye State’s congressional district plan was “totally invalid because it is overly pro-Republican and unsupportive of the Democratic Party.” That, the court ruled as a violation Article XIX, Section 1 (C) (3) (a) of the state constitution.
The court also found that the plan, led by a Republican-led redistricting commission, “excessively divided Hamilton, Cuyahoga, and Summit counties by violating Part 1 (C) (3) (b)“Of Article XIX of the state constitution.
The court ordered “the General Assembly to adopt a new constituency plan in full compliance with Article XIX of the Ohio Constitution.”
Dissidents support the majority because of policy making, not applying the law. It also alleges the majority has failed to come up with “any feasible standard” that can be applied to determine when the legislature has “excessive favoritism.”[ed] a political party or divisive[d] a county. ”
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https://lawandcrime.com/voting-rights/in-second-opinion-this-week-ohio-supreme-court-strikes-down-gerrymandered-districts-as-antithetical-perversion-of-representative-democracy/ Ohio Supreme Court releases more map of Gerrymandered County