Retired Ohio Supreme Court Judge Maureen O’Connor pushes for measure to end gerrymandering

MASSILLON – A retired Ohio Supreme Court judge was barnstorming though parts of eastern Ohio Tuesday calling out perceived gerrymandering in forming congressional districts.

As part of her tour, former Court Chief Justice Maureen O’Connor met with about three dozen voters outside a polling location at First Christian Church to advocate for a redistricting reform measure to be placed on the Nov. 5 general election ballot.

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Voters were deciding on a special election Tuesday for Ohio’s 6th Congressional District, which has been identified by some in Ohio as a redistricting nightmare, as it spans part or all of 11 counties.

“That flies in the face of how you draw districts,” O’Connor said. “Drawing districts should be done by (Ohio) citizens, not legislators and politicians.”

O’Connor argued that the 6th District boundaries were gerrymandered by state politicians, as an avenue to remain in power.

She is also advocating for a statewide Citizens Not Politicians amendment, which aims to end gerrymandering, or the practice of drawing boundaries of electoral districts that gives one political party an unfair advantage over a rival.

O’Connor and the Citizens Not Politicians organization are calling for a gerrymandering amendment to be placed on the Nov. 5 general election ballot.

“We’ve trusted the politicians to do (redistricting), but they’re not,” said Carol Canavan, co-president of the Canton Area League of Women Voters. “It’s up to us to get our ballots to count.”

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