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Rep. Blackshear votes in opposition to Republican gerrymandered 13-2 congressional map, urges veto from the governor

November 18, 2021
Willis E. Blackshear, Jr. News

COLUMBUS —State Rep. Willis Blackshear Jr. (D-Dayton) today issued a statement as Republicans passed a partisan, four-year congressional district map that unduly favors GOP candidates 13-2. 

“Ohioans in 2015 and 2018 overwhelmingly voted for a fair and transparent redistricting process. When you look at the current Congressional map, it isn’t a true representation of Ohio. The goal was to create a bipartisan, 10-year map, which wasn’t accomplished today. My hope is that Governor Dewine vetoes this map and stays true to his 2018 campaign promise of having bipartisan maps honoring the voter’s wishes of having fair districts,” said Rep. Blackshear.

Democrats offered a compromise set of district lines on the House floor Thursday, which they say better align with the fair district reforms voters passed in 2018. The Democratic amendment mirrored their compromise map, HB 483, and would have limited unwarranted splits in Ohio’s largest counties, kept more communities together, and better reflected the preferences of Ohio voters. The map also created three minority opportunity districts. Republicans rejected the good faith amendment.

Following the vote, Rep. Blackshear sent a letter to Gov. Mike DeWine urging a veto of the Republicans’ partisan 13-2 map, which says the map “violates the Ohio Constitution and flouts the will of the people of Ohio who demanded fair districts that follow explicit, strict anti-gerrymandering requirements.”

*Editor’s note: A copy of Rep. Blackshear’s letter urging Gov. DeWine to veto SB 258 is attached.