League calls for signatures for redistricting amendment
Tuesday, Jun. 5, 2012
League of Women Voters of Metropolitan Columbus President Kitty Burcsu submitted the following letter to the editor to The Columbus Dispatch.
Ensuring a voice for every citizen on all levels of government is fundamental to our democracy. To protect this right, the League of Women Voters of Metropolitan Columbus, along with a statewide coalition of organizations, is working to place a constitutional amendment on the November ballot to reform Ohio’s process for drawing congressional and legislative districts. This amendment would create a non-partisan independent citizens’ commission responsible for drawing legislative and congressional boundaries in the state. No politicians or lobbyists would be permitted to sit on this commission.
The research has been done. Last year, the League of Women Voters of Ohio along with 27 other nonpartisan groups conducted an extensive investigation of Ohio’s recent politician-led redistricting. The need to enact lasting reforms that ensure fair districts to give every Ohioan a vote and a choice became apparent.
During Ohio’s recent redistricting process, politicians virtually ensured one party control of a majority of the State’s legislative and congressional seats for the next ten years. Ohio is closely divided politically, yet because of the one-sided process a single political party will control over 60% of the Legislature and 70% of the Congressional seats.
In a democracy, voters should choose their representatives not politicians choose their voters. The time has come to put voters first and make sure all votes count.