Skip to main content

Sign up for our newsletter.

Quality journalism. Progressive values. Direct to your inbox.

Protesters demonstrate outside the Supreme Court as justices considered partisan gerrymandering. (Photo: Shawn Thew/EPA-EFE)

'Victory for Ohio Voters' as Court Strikes Down GOP's Gerrymandered Map

"Voters must choose their elected officials. Not the other way around."

Jake Johnson

Voting rights advocates celebrated Friday after a panel of three federal judges struck down Ohio's congressional map, ruling that district lines were unconstitutionally gerrymandered to benefit the Republican Party.

"For far too long partisan gerrymandering has plagued our politics, divided our communities, and weakened the power of the people's voice and vote in government."
—Catherine Turcer, Common Cause Ohio

In a unanimous ruling (pdf), the judges said they were "convinced by the evidence" that the Republican-drawn congressional map amounted to an "intentional and effective" partisan gerrymander.

"The bottom line is that the dominant party in state government manipulated district lines in an attempt to control electoral outcomes and thus direct the political ideology of the state's congressional delegation," the judges wrote.

"Today's decision is a victory for Ohio voters," Catherine Turcer, executive director of Common Cause Ohio, said in a statement. "For far too long partisan gerrymandering has plagued our politics, divided our communities, and weakened the power of the people's voice and vote in government."

The court ruled that Ohio Republicans cannot use the gerrymandered map in future elections and gave lawmakers until June to draw up a replacement that does not violate the Constitution.

As Politico reported, "Republicans have dominated Ohio's congressional delegation since the map was enacted in 2011, winning 12 of the state's 16 congressional seats in all four elections held under the map."

Ari Berman, a reporter for Mother Jones, noted that Republicans maintained their overwhelming advantage despite winning just 52 percent of the vote in the 2018 midterm elections.

The ACLU of Ohio, which challenged the Republican map in court, celebrated the judges' ruling as a major victory for voting rights.

"The court issued a meticulously detailed opinion, concluding that Ohio's map was an unconstitutional partisan gerrymander, and ordered the state to enact a new remedial plan by June 14," Freda Levenson, legal director for ACLU Ohio, said in a statement. "This opinion, declaring Ohio an egregiously gerrymandered state, completely validates every one of our claims and theories in every respect."


Our work is licensed under Creative Commons (CC BY-NC-ND 3.0). Feel free to republish and share widely.

We've had enough. The 1% own and operate the corporate media. They are doing everything they can to defend the status quo, squash dissent and protect the wealthy and the powerful. The Common Dreams media model is different. We cover the news that matters to the 99%. Our mission? To inform. To inspire. To ignite change for the common good. How? Nonprofit. Independent. Reader-supported. Free to read. Free to republish. Free to share. With no advertising. No paywalls. No selling of your data. Thousands of small donations fund our newsroom and allow us to continue publishing. Can you chip in? We can't do it without you. Thank you.

In Landslide 1,108-to-387 Vote, Maine Nurses Reject Effort to Decertify Their Union

"They thought because we were a new union, they could manipulate Maine Med nurses and overturn our 2021 election," said one nurse. "But we just showed them the door."

Jake Johnson ·


Dems Threaten to Subpoena FTI Consulting Over 'Blanket Refusal' to Provide Info on Fossil Fuel Work

"FTI's refusal to cooperate with this congressional inquiry shows that they have something to hide, which will reveal the dangerous ways agencies like theirs have promoted fossil fuel greenwash and misinformation," said the Clean Creatives campaign's leader.

Jessica Corbett ·


Bad Day for DeSantis as 'Stop WOKE Act' Hit With Injunction, Lawsuit

"If Florida truly believes we live in a post-racial society, then let it make its case," a federal judge wrote in blocking part of the controversial law. "But it cannot win the argument by muzzling its opponents."

Brett Wilkins ·


US Judge Says Mar-a-Lago Affidavit 'Can Be Unsealed' With Redactions

"This is going to be a considered, careful process, where everybody's rights, the government's and the media's, will be protected," declared U.S. Magistrate Judge Bruce Reinhart.

Jessica Corbett ·


Federal Judge Orders Starbucks to Rehire Fired Union Organizers in Memphis

"It was a ruling in favor of what's right," said one member of the Memphis Seven. "We knew from day one that we were going to win this, it just took time."

Brett Wilkins ·

Common Dreams Logo