Congressional redistricting procedures in Ohio
On May 8, 2018, voters in Ohio approved a constitutional amendment establishing new procedures for congressional redistricting. Beginning with the 2020 redistricting cycle, the following provisions were set to take effect:
- Following completion of the United States Census, state legislators can adopt a new congressional district map if three-fifths of the legislature's total membership vote to approve, including one-half of the minority party members. This map would apply for 10 years.
- If the legislature proves unable to adopt a new map, a commission will be formed to adopt a map. That commission will include the governor, state auditor, secretary of state, and four legislators, two of whom must come from the legislature's minority party. A majority of the commission's members, including two members belonging to the minority party, must agree on a map. The map would apply for 10 years.
- If the commission proves unable to adopt a map, state legislators will be given a second chance to adopt a map. The map would have to be approved by three-fifths of the legislature's total membership, including one-third of the minority party's members. The map would apply for 10 years.
- If the legislature fails a second time, the majority party of the legislature, without support from the minority party, can adopt a map that would apply for four years.
- Maps drawn by the legislature can be vetoed by the governor or a veto referendum campaign. The amendment stipulates that 65 of Ohio's counties cannot be split during redistricting (18 can be split once, and the state's five most populous counties can be split twice).
State legislative redistricting procedures in Ohio
On November 3, 2015, voters in Ohio approved a constitutional amendment to create a bipartisan state legislative redistricting commission. The commission comprises seven members: the governor, state auditor, secretary of state, one person appointed by the speaker of the Ohio House of Representatives, one person appointed by the House leader of the largest political party of which the speaker is not a member, one person appointed by the President of the Ohio State Senate, and one person appointed by the Senate leader of the largest political party of which the president is not a member.
Maps drawn by the commission are valid for 10 years if at least two commissioners from each major political party vote for them. Should the maps be passed along strictly partisan lines, the maps are valid for four years.
A six-member advisory commission is also involved in the congressional and state legislative redistricting processes. The majority leaders of the Ohio House of Representatives and the Ohio State Senate each appoint three members, "at least one of whom must be from a different party, and at least one of whom must not be a legislator."
All legislative districts are required to be compact and made of "contiguous territory." Also, the "boundary of each district [must] be a single nonintersecting continuous line." The amendment forbids district plans from favoring or disfavoring either political party.