Ohio Secretary of State Jon Husted said Thursday that legislators could fix Ohio’s partisan redistricting process with a few sentences. Husted said the two competing efforts to change how Ohio draws congressional districts are too complicated. A reform plan, he said, only needs two rules: Require a bipartisan vote and don’t divide counties until the entire population of the county has been used up to draw a district. “That’s all you have to do. Bipartisan vote, don’t divide counties — boom!” Husted said, speaking to reporters outside a conference of the Ohio Association of Community Action Agencies.
Husted, a Republican lieutenant governor candidate, led the charge to reform the process in 2009 as a state senator. But Democrats did not support his proposal because they thought they might have majority control over the process in 2011.
But instead, Republicans took control of both Statehouse chambers and were able to gerrymander a map of safe seats for both parties, giving the GOP an advantage in 12 of 16 districts.
Husted has stayed out of the public discussion about the redistricting reform plan introduced earlier this month by Republican Sen. Matt Huffman. But he said Thursday he has talked with legislators in recent days.