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Politics & Government

Statewide Officeholders Voice Frustration In Legislative Leaders

Ohio House Democratic Leader Emilia Sykes, Senate President Matt Huffman, House Speaker Bob Cupp, both Republicans, and Democratic state Sen. Vernon Sykes speak to Auditor Keith Faber at the Ohio Statehouse in Columbus, Ohio, ahead of the first meeting Friday, Aug. 6, 2021, of the Ohio Redistricting Commission on which they all sit.
Julie Carr Smyth
/
AP
Ohio House Democratic Leader Emilia Sykes, Senate President Matt Huffman, House Speaker Bob Cupp, both Republicans, and Democratic state Sen. Vernon Sykes speak to Auditor Keith Faber at the Ohio Statehouse in Columbus, Ohio, ahead of the first meeting Friday, Aug. 6, 2021, of the Ohio Redistricting Commission on which they all sit.

The process to draw a new Congressional district map will go back to the state legislature as the Ohio Redistricting Commission missed a constitutional deadline.

The commission was created to help bypass a logjam in redistricting by bringing in the governor, secretary of state, and auditor; officers who are accountable to statewide elections. Now commissioners are expressing frustration that they never got that shot.

In September, the commission approved maps that guarantee Republican supermajorities in the House and Senate, so both Democrats on the Redistricting Commission voted against them.

Republican Secretary of State Frank LaRose told the commission then that the next time the panel met again, things would be different. But the commission never worked on a new Congressional map before the deadline.

While LaRose did vote with the other four Republicans on the commission to approve those earlier maps, he says he's frustrated and disappointed about the missed opportunity.

"I think some gave up on the process of compromise long ago," LaRose said.

When asked if missing the deadline was a way to purposely shut out the statewide officers, Republican House Speaker Bob Cupp said no.

Copyright 2021 The Statehouse News Bureau. To see more, visit The Statehouse News Bureau.