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New Ohio Congress Card Canceled
The court’s Republican chief justice joined the three Democratic justices in the majority opinion, while the court’s other three justices dissented.

State lawmakers will now have 30 days to draw up a new congressional district plan after the court ordered the legislature to draw a new map that “is not dictated by partisan considerations,” or the onus is on the Ohio Redistricting Commission to develop a new plan within 30 days.

“When the dealer stacks the game ahead, the house usually wins,” judge Michael Donnelly wrote for the majority. “This perhaps explains how a party that typically garners no more than 55% of the statewide popular vote is positioned to reliably win between 75% and 80% of the seats in the Congressional delegation of Ohio. By any rational measure, this biased result just doesn’t add up.”

The court also found that the map “unduly divides” three counties – Hamilton, Cuyahoga and Summit counties – in a way prohibited by the state constitution.

Republicans are well positioned to win a majority in the House as the out of power party traditionally does well in midterm elections, but Friday’s decision is a setback for Republicans in Ohio.

Complainants and other card opponents celebrated Friday’s decision.

“Once again, the Supreme Court of Ohio has done what the legislature refused to do – listened to the will of the voters of Ohio,” said Elizabeth Walters, chairwoman of the Ohio Democratic Party, in a press release. “Any map that further rigs our state in favor of one party over another is unacceptable and we will be watching closely to ensure that any new maps reflect the fair representation that Ohioans have overwhelmingly demanded.”

Ohio was awarded 15 congressional seats after the 2020 U.S. census – one seat less than in 2011. According to the discarded cards, Republicans would have had the advantage over 12 or 13 of them.

The redistricting plan passed the Republican-controlled General Assembly in November without the support of Democratic members, and Republican Gov. Mike DeWine signed the bill later that month.

The map was quickly challenged in court, with two lawsuits filed by Ohio voters and voting groups alleging the map was “unconstitutional partisan gerrymandering” and failed to follow the process of the Constitution of the state of passing congressional redistricting plans, which were reformed as a result of Ohio voters. overwhelming approval in 2018.

On Wednesday, Ohio’s high court also rejected the state’s new map for the State House and Senate districts and ordered the state’s redistricting commission to submit a new plan in 10 days.

This story has been updated.

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