Ohio Republicans Decide Democracy Is For Libs, Go Ahead And Eliminate It
Democrats around the country are gearing up to fight the fascists in drawing maps for the districts that make up the United States House of Representatives. But it's important to remember that the real seventh-level-of-hell fascism, the kind that outright eliminates democracy and puts bounties on pregnant people's wombs, comes from state legislatures.
So anyway, Ohio Republicans on that state's redistricting commission decided Wednesday night that it would be fine to give the GOP a veto-proof majority in the state legislature for the next four years. (They were supposed to pass a 10-year map, but the commission did not get that done by the deadline, which was apparently 11:59 p.m. Wednesday.) Why should Democrats have a voice at all, when they could just not have one?
The 5-2 vote along partisan lines came after hours of back-and-forth negotiations broke down. [...]
Republicans justified the maps by saying Ohioans favored GOP candidates between 54% – the average vote total for GOP candidates in recent statewide elections – and 81% – the percent of statewide races won by Republicans over the past decade – of the time. The GOP-approved maps give Republicans a 62-37 advantage in the House and 23-10 advantage in Senate or 64.4% of the Ohio Legislature.
That 81 percent number up there is because they had already gerrymandered the shit out of the state in legislative races. This is not hard. Seriously. Look at the 2020 electoral map, in a state Donald Trump only won 53 to 45.
But PFFFFFT, say the Republicans, who we guess believe voting and opinions are only meant as rights for white conservative landowners.
The Cincinnati Enquirer reports that the GOP state auditor, secretary of state, and governor "expressed frustration" with how it all went down, but they "ultimately voted for the final product," we guess because sometimes the process of making fascism makes a belly queasy, but it's worth it in the end or something.
Here's a fucked up thing, though. In Ohio, voters actually have amended their state constitution to say that redistricting maps "shall correspond closely to the statewide preferences of the voters of Ohio," and that those preferences should be figured out "based on statewide state and federal partisan general election results during the last ten years." The Cincinnati Enquirer said there was a "vigorous debate" among the commission over whether those simple words mean what they fucking say, adding that "[e]ven the Democrats' counteroffers [to Republican-drawn maps] fell short of" that standard. (You can read those words yourself at the link a few sentences back, they are not complicated.)
The commission was required to provide a statement about how they attempted to meet the constitutional standard that the map corresponds closely to the statewide preferences of the voters of Ohio. [...]
"The commission determined that the statewide preferences of the voters of Ohio predominantly favor Republicans," the majority wrote in their statement.
That is what is known in politics as "cynically saying bullshit with your un-American facehole."
So, people gonna sue over this map? Yeah probably. Is democracy going to prevail? Uh, well, let's ask Ohio GOP Governor Mike DeWine, who just really sounds proud and confident about all this:
"We know that this matter will be in court," DeWine said. "What I am sure in my heart is that this committee could have come up with a bill that was much more clearly constitutional. I'm sorry that we did not do that."
Oh for fuck's sake.
White Republicans always always always overreach when they get too much power. Always.
Anyway, the Cincinnati Enquirer also notes that the Ohio Supreme Court is 4-3 Republican, but there's one justice up there people think could maybe probably be a swing vote.
So there is some hope, we guess, for democracy, fingers crossed, in the state of Ohio.
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