Off Topic but Vital: Tuesday’s Most Important Election Result

November 4, 2015

bachmaneyesFor those in the US who have been frustrated and horrified by the emergence of the far right as a force in congress, and for those outside the country that are baffled as to how certifiable loons have been able to become so powerful – this may be a ray of hope.

The problem has been that Republican majorities in state legislatures, many elected in the frenzied Tea Party election of 2010, drew legislative district boundaries guaranteed to promote the most radically right-wing elements of the Republican party. This has lead to the current paralysis that we see in the US House in particular.

Ohio, a key state, has taken a step toward changing the way redistricting is done, putting it in the hands of a bipartisan panel, rather than a partisan legislature. This is intended both for state level and national level candidates.
There are similar initiatives in the works in several other states – which will be boosted by this overwhelming result.

Columbus Dispatch:

Voters overwhelmingly backed a plan to reform Ohio’s hyper-partisan process for drawing legislative districts, and supporters are already looking ahead to passing the same reforms for congressional districts next year.

“Today’s win was an important first step, but it only got us halfway there,” said Carrie Davis, executive director of the League of Women Voters of Ohio. “We need to take these new anti-gerrymandering rules that Issue 1 applied to the General Assembly and extend them to congressional districts, which are even more gerrymandered.”

With 54 percent of precincts reporting, Issue 1, which will change the legislative redistricting process starting in 2021, when the lines are scheduled to be drawn again, was winning with 71 percent of the vote.

“Ohio voters can do amazing things when they work together. Let’s work together to reform the congressional map,” said Sandy Theis, executive director of ProgressOhio.

5 Responses to “Off Topic but Vital: Tuesday’s Most Important Election Result”

  1. Shane Burgel Says:

    Being an Ohioan I was extremely satisfied to see this pass.

    • dumboldguy Says:

      Yes, the rest of us feel good for you too. We are attempting the same sort of thing in VA, where 80% of the legislative seats were not even contested in yesterday’s election because they have been gerrymandered “safe”.

      Do NOT hold your breath until 2021, a mere SIX (6) years from now, when the process may bear some fruit in Ohio. The right wing will follow its usual tactics of denial and delay, and some of the reddest states may NEVER be properly redistricted (at least for decades).

      IMO, these efforts must go parallel with efforts to get the big and dirty money out of politics. If we don’t overturn Citizens United also, it WILL take forever to take back the country.

  2. Wow, progress! Ending partisan gerrymandering? Next step: U.S. electoral system catch up with telegraph age?

  3. indy222 Says:

    The campaign finance gravy train is a huge source of all these problems. I again refer you to Gilens and Page (2014) showing the average voter’s wants have ZERO correlation to what laws get passed, and the Economic Elites are 100% effective in stopping unwanted legislation. So it’ll require a revolution before we reform money in politics, I expect.

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