A single statewide question greets voters on the May 8 ballot, asking them to amend the Ohio Constitution to create what backers claim will be a less partisan way to redraw congressional districts each decade. Both the Republican and Democratic parties have endorsed it. It has a broad swath of bipartisan support from government watchdog, business, labor, and agricultural organizations. Even the American Civil Liberties Union, which argues the plan would still allow partisan gerrymandering, isn’t asking voters to reject it. Keary McCarthy, one of the leaders of the “yes” campaign on Issue 1, said a modest budget of less than $500,000 will focus on promoting the broad, bipartisan support. But he also knows that the multistep process involved could be relatively confusing to explain.
“We’re trying to be smart with how to use our dollars to communicate to the statewide electorate,” Mr. McCarthy said. “We will do some digital-targeted communication and will follow up on requests for absentee ballots.”
Campaign finance reports filed Thursday show that the Coalition for Redistricting Reform had raised nearly $163,000 through April 18 and still had the vast majority of that on hand to spend.
The National Democratic Redistricting Committee, which has made remap reform in Ohio a priority, contributed $50,000. No equivalent Republican money has been contributed.