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If Ohio Bans Gerrymandering Today, There Could be Hope for American Democracy


#1

If Ohio Bans Gerrymandering Today, There Could be Hope for American Democracy

John Nichols

American democracy is in sorry shape—battered on all sides by big money, restrictions on voting and vapid media that trivialize rather than enlighten. But Robert M. La Follette and the progressive reformers who a century ago established direct primaries, initiatives, and referendums; an elected US Senate; and voting rights for women always said that “the cure for what ails democracy is more democracy.”

In Ohio today, voters have an opportunity to apply the cure.


#2

The rigged game is the one thing that government did competently. It's not only a rigged game, they've even rigged the way the rigging is done. Oligarchy is not the only rigged game in town... the town is rigged too!


#4

Maybe we can ban Gerrymandering in Illinois as well.


#5

So now you are being the purist...


#6

at this point, I wouldn't trust either party on this issue. if there's one situation besides war where both parties collude harmoniously it's in the preservation of their power. In short, this commission needs to be staff by the UN instead.


#8

They obviously didn't anticipate that outcome but the language refers to majority party and has elected officials so if the independent majority elect someone who is also an independent, they would be represented. But your point is valid in that it would tend to entrench the current two party system.
"The amendment's system created a seven-member Ohio Redistricting Commission. The members are the governor, state auditor, secretary of state, one person appointed by the speaker of the House of Representatives, one person appointed by the legislative leader of the largest political party in the House of which the speaker is not a member, one person
appointed by the president of the Ohio Senate and one person appointed by the legislative leader of the largest political party in the Senate of which the president is not a member.
The new commission requires two members from the minority party or 29
percent of the commission seats, versus a single member under the former
system.[1]"
http://ballotpedia.org/Ohio_Bipartisan_Redistricting_Commission_Amendment,_Issue_1_%282015%29


#9

Nichols idea of hope for American democracy is that his party can recover from the other party.

I don't think this creates much hope for real democracy. It still has first past the post, winner take all, majority of a minority (the minority of possible voters who vote) control, and mandated protection of the two parties. There is no proportional representation here, no alternative voting systems that undo the lesser of two evils argument, no independence from big finance.

Who else would be excited by this except a party apparatchik?