A second take on Ohio’s congressional districts, drawn fairly.
(In the latest Draw It Yourself, Robert Wheel incorporates feedback from Ohio residents and adjusts his map accordingly. Get caught up with his previous maps of Illinois, Pennsylvania, North Carolina and Texas.)
In my first stab at drawing a fair Ohio map the feedback was unanimous: you’re on the right path, but there’s work to be done. So we’re running our second iteration here on 50 States of Blue to try and appease the peanut gallery (as the peanut gallery consists of people who care about proper representation of their state and more broadly want a better democracy, I’m deeply reverential of them). So taking those comments into account, let’s take a look at what I came up with:
Even more beautiful than our last map! Anyway, to go over the changes let’s start in the northeast corner of the state around Cleveland:
The 7th (Tossup), 11th (Safe Democratic) and 14th (Likely Republican) are unchanged under this map, but the 13th and 16th shift borders a bit to put all of Columbiana County into the 13th. The feedback that I got under the last map is that it should all be put together with the rest of the Mahoning Valley in one district. It means the 13th loses its Cleveland/Akron suburbs in Portage County to the 16th while shifting into more Republican area. This means it went from 51-45 Trump to 54-42 Trump.
Meanwhile, the 16th gets a bit more Democratic at 50-45 Clinton. Rep. Tim Ryan would be the only area congressman running for re-election, and considering he sees himself a future leader of the party he’d probably want some safe turf to run on. And with former Rep. Betty Sutton looking the likely Democratic lieutenant governor nominee, he’d probably have an open shot at running in the 16th instead of the 13th, as he only lives a 45 minute drive away and represents much of it today. Assuming such a scenario, the 16th would be Safe Democratic while the 13th would be a Tossup, with Democratic gubernatorial also-ran Joe Schiavoni seeming a logical candidate. Meanwhile, further to the south the 6th gets more compact but remains Safe Republican.
Oh, and did you notice how the 9th is now mostly out of Sandusky? Let’s move to Northwest Ohio:
The feedback I got from people in the Toledo area is that the 9th should take in all of Wood and Fulton at the expense of Erie. The 9th gets a tad more Republican but it’s still a 49-45 Clinton seat and Marcy Kaptur would remain Safe. The 4th and 5th shift their borders a bit to accommodate the change and while both remain Safe Republican Jim Jordan now lives in the 5th along with current 8th District Rep. Warren Davidson, with Rep. Bob Latta living well within the 9th. The 3 of them would probably end up dividing these two seats up somehow.
Why is Davidson in the 5th now? Let’s take a look at the Cincinnati area:
The 1st is unchanged, but I’d still shift it to Likely Democratic, now that rising star Aftab Pureval is running there. And the 8th would remain safely Republican featuring an intraparty brawl between Brad Wenstrup and Steve Chabot. Notably, its border with the 10th now breaks across two counties. This was at the request of Daytonians, who wanted to take in the area around Middletown in Butler County and the northern reaches of Warren County at the expense of Miami County. The partisan impact is minimal, as it’s still a 53-42 Trump district and Safe Republican. As would the 2nd and 15th to the east. But the 15th’s borders have a notably change, so let’s go deeper into the Columbus area:
Columbus residents were up in arms over my last map. The people on the south side of the city hated being thrown in with those in the north, and vice versa. They demanded that the southern edges of Franklin County be removed from the 3rd and the southern edge of Union County be added to the 12th. I obliged, but it shifts the district from being 49-46 Clinton to 48-46 Trump. I’d still rate it a Tossup with the resignation of Pat Tiberi, but it does make a win a bit harder (and the home of leading Democratic candidate Danny O’Connor is taken out of the district). The 3rd takes in some heavily Democratic areas at the 12th’s fringes and would remain a Safe Democratic seat.
And there you have it, our second iteration of a fair Ohio map. It improves Republican fortunes in the 12th and 13th, but at the expense of the 16th. But that’s enough out of me, is there anything left that you’d fix?