COLUMBUS, Ohio — Ohio is losing some of its power in Washington. The U.S. Census Bureau announced results Monday from its 2020 survey, showing Ohio will go from 16 seats in the U.S. House to 15.
What You Need To Know
- The U.S. Census Bureau announced the results of its 2020 survey
- Based on the results, Ohio will lose a seat in the U.S. House
- It is unknown what district will be dropped in the future
Ohio is one of seven states losing at least one member of Congress, joining California, Illinois, Michigan, West Virginia, Pennsylvania and New York with reductions.
Six states are reaping the fruits of significant population growth as Oregon, Montana, Colorado, North Carolina, Texas and Florida will all be adding members in the next congressional election.
Ohio State University political science professor Dr. Richard Gunther said he saw it coming.
"It’s certainly not a surprise to anyone,” Gunther said. “For the last decade lots of people were predicting we’d lose a seat — some even predicting we’d lose two seats.”
But from where will that seat be cut?
Jen Miller with the League of Women Voters said it all depends on the new maps that are being re-drawn, and hopes this time the pen won’t be guided by gerrymandering.
“What we don’t want to see is any excuse for rigging the map for partisan outcomes,” said Miller
In 2015 and 2018, the citizens of Ohio voted overwhelmingly for more fair, and representative districting with the goal of voters picking their leaders and not leaders picking their voters.
For example, this time around the entire city of Cincinnati must remain one whole district and not to be divvied up by left- or right-leaning neighborhoods.
Still, there are a lot of ways the rest of Ohio may look.
“There’s really no way of predicting at this point what the partisan impact of that will be," said Gunther. "Whether gerrymandering would continue, or gerrymandering would be severely limited.”
To limit gerrymandering potential, Miller said the real work begins now.
“Let’s get started,” she said. “Let’s start having technical conversations about how we can ensure that every Ohioan has fair representation.”
The new maps will be redrawn in September when the census bureau releases a more comprehensive report.