Democrats just had a significant setback for this year’s midterm elections.
As a panel of federal judges approved the GOP-friendly maps for Ohio elections, Republicans are likely to put on an impressive show in the November contest.
Republicans Get a Solid Edge in Ohio Midterm Elections
Last week, the state of Ohio passed the deadline to have a map for its upcoming congressional elections even after the orders of the court.
This prompted a panel of federal judges to intervene once again in the matter. Now the slate of maps, which is now approved, is called Map 3 and favors the Republican Party.
Amul Thapar, a federal judge who was a member of the panel, stated the court had to choose the best option available to them. This decision, as per the judge, is driven by two important parameters.
First, Thapar indicated no map managed to win the approval of the Ohio Supreme Court. Secondly, Map 3 was able to empower the state to solve its own problem, which was the decisive factor in the decision-making by the panel.
BREAKING: Federal court panel orders @FrankLaRose to hold Ohio's legislative primaries on Aug. 2 using GOP-authored redistricting maps ruled unconstitutional twice by the Ohio Supreme Court. More soon at https://t.co/2P425bd36e pic.twitter.com/nBOOTRzhTM
— Jeremy Pelzer (@jpelzer) May 27, 2022
When the map was first established, the Ohio Supreme Court ruled it incorporated gerrymandering, so it was declared void.
The high court was equally active during the whole controversy; it rejected the maps five times during the whole redistricting cycle.
This tussle between the commission and the high court delayed the primary elections in the state by three months.
Ohio Map-Making Crisis is Real
During the whole episode, both the high court and the Supreme Court shared the same ideology.
The subsequent efforts of the high court to reject commission-approved maps increased the distance between state Republicans and the judiciary.
Experts believe these crises of map-making for the state depict the lack of bipartisan consensus on the all-important matter.
The decision will stand because it is a logistical impossibility to have any other map by August 2 and also impossible to have a primary after August 2. Just ask the bipartisan Ohio Assn of Election Officials.
— Representative Bill Seitz (@CincySeitz) May 28, 2022
According to a redistricting reforms activist Catherine Turcer, Ohioans believed the rules enacted by the Ohio state Constitution would solve the redistricting crisis. However, that turned out not to be the case.
Although these maps are only to be used for this year’s elections and will eventually be redrawn for the 2024 cycle, Republicans are likely to get the favor anyway.
Reportedly, the GOP will be able to clinch at least 54 % of seats in the state legislature.
Previously, the judges of the US District Court for the Southern District of Ohio gave the deadline to the state to come up with viable maps to avoid facing the court’s intervention in the implementation of Map 3.
As the court’s deadline of May 28 was set to expire, the judges finally intervened to implement Map 3 to avoid delaying the primary elections further.
According to the judges, the judiciary wants to give maximum authority to the state; the courts have to wait until the last moment to intervene.
If voters think they are not getting the desired results, they should punish candidates, the judges wrote.