Friday, July 7, 2017



UPDATED:  10:26 AM

It appears that Attorney General Mike DeWine is not much of a small letter "d"emocrat.

The Stark County Political Report thinks he is into foot dragging on an initiative generated early this year allows to speak through the franchise on a fairer way for Ohioans to choose congresspersons after the 2020 U.S. census becomes official.

According to the graphed-above Columbus Dispatch article, on May 4th DeWine:
... rejected it because it didn’t say challenges under the proposed constitutional amendment would be heard directly by the Ohio Supreme Court and because the summary didn’t cite the part of the Ohio Constitution under which the Supreme Court would have that jurisdiction  
Executive Director Catherine Turcer of Common Cause—Ohio, the lead in the effort under a coalition effort known as Fair Congressional Districts for Ohio said that DeWine's objections "seem very minor."

Oh yes, Mike tell us.

Ohio voters are going feel that he in doing his job as attorney general didn't protect us in not holding out for the inclusion of the Ohio Supreme Court language.

Although nearly every Stark County Republican that I talk to (e.g. Commissioner Creighton [regional chair of DeWine for Governor], Treasurer Zumbar [the county chair] and North Canton mayor David Held say that DeWine in a high quality individual on a personal basis, my take on the guy is that he wears his Republicanism on his sleeves and he knows that right now gerrymandered congressional districts favoring Republican candidates is a huge advantage in giving "organized" Republicans a 12 to 4 advantage in the United States House of Representatives.

Ohio in pretty much a 50/50 state in many statewide elections going back quite a few years.

Here and there, one political party or the other will dominate. 

Now is the Republican time. 

Eventually, "the worm will turn" in Ohio and elected legislative Democrats will try to subvert the fairness of our election districts if the Fair Congressional Districts for Ohio does not get on the ballot and pass.

If anyone doubts that "organized" Democrats are just as capable of constructing "in effect" rigged elections take a look at this piece about 2011 Maryland elections in The Atlantic:

Getting back to DeWine, I think he abused his attorney general discretion in favor of a Republican Party interest in dealing in the picayune.

His nitpicking will not prevail.  

But a consequence of DeWine's hyper technical if not constitutionally illegal approach is to delay a statewide vote on the issue until November, 2018 rather than the originally sought November, 2017.

Hopefully, Republicans in the May 8, 2018 primary election will remember DeWine being a ninny on the issue as a factor in whether or not to vote for him.

In 2015, Ohioans/Stark Countians overwhelming passed a similar measure having to do with state legislative races.

The date for correcting ballot language to DeWine's satisfaction and circulated to sign up sufficient numbers of qualifying registered voters so that the initiative could appear on this year's general election ballot was this past Wednesday, July 5th.

More and more voters are eschewing the label Republican/Democrat and donning a "non-partisan" mantle.

Too many "organized" partisans beginning with Elbridge Gerry (July 17, 1812) as Massachusetts governor signed legislation into law a measure that violated the "one person, one vote" principle of the U.S. Constitution.

The contorted district is said to have looked like a salamander and hence the Gerry action came to be known as "gerrymandering."

On July 17th, 2017, the Fair Congressional District for Ohio folks are planning a party celebrating the group's work to undo in Ohio what Gerry and his fellow political partisans started in Massachusetts in 1812.

One of the reasons why Americans are increasingly distaining partisan political alignment is evidenced by what I think is a silly but nonetheless damaging partisanship on the part of the likes of DeWine in helping those who are intent on adulterating our congressional election district configurations into being "unfair" districts.

The Common Cause-led Fair Congressional Districts for Ohio is undeterred by the DeWine set back and in a telephone discussion with initiative supporters (including myself), Director Turcer discussed the details (LINK to a recording of the event) of the process in a session which lasted a little over one hour.

This is what Turcer had to say about the signature on petitions effort to date in an e-mail sent out on Wednesday:
We have been thrilled by the level of enthusiasm we’ve seen in volunteers picking up petitions. We have thousands of volunteers spread across the state, carrying tens of thousands of petitions. A big thank you to all of you who have helped us get this far.  For only being one month into the petition signature gathering, we are way ahead of schedule. That’s a real testament to all the hard work of you, our Fair Districts volunteers.
A consequence of DeWine's delaying tactic, the collection of signatures effort should be complete about September 1st.  It could slip further into the fall if additional signatures are needed once the validation of signatures process gets under way.

In Stark County, it appears that the "organized" Stark County Democratic Party volunteers are doing the heavy lifting in circulating petitions.

In yesterday's telephone conference, Turcer shared with conferees that the 2013 Republican dominated Ohio General Assembly legislatively via Senate Bill 47, (apparently in reaction to a "overwhelmingly successful" initiative petition repealing Senate Bill 5 anti-union law by referendum of 2011) burdened future initiative petition drives with an electronic filing requirement (shortening the time frame in which signatures could be collected) which, of course, makes the process more difficult and time consuming, to wit:  (from Ballotpedia website)

Note:  Stark County Republicans Scott Oelslager (Senate, District 29), Kirk Schuring (House, District 48), and Christina Hagan (District 50) voted for the restrictive on initiative petition Senate Bill 47.

Submitting signatures
When a petition is submitted, an electronic copy must also be filed and the petition must be broken into parts that are all numbered sequentially and labeled by the county in which it was circulated. The petition must also include a summary of the parts of the petition and the signatures on each ... 
An initiative or referendum committee cannot collect additional signatures for a petition after it has been submitted, except for in a ten-day window beginning after the secretary of state notifies the committee that petition, as submitted, was insufficient and provides the required official form for additional signature collection, which must be used when collecting supplemental signatures in the ten-day window allowed. ... 
A petition that has been rejected cannot be resubmitted.  ... 
DocumentIcon.jpg See law: Ohio Constitution, Article II, Section 1g, Ohio Revised Code, Title XXXV, Chapter 3519.06 and Senate Bill 47 (2013) (emphasis added)

Another indication, in the estimate of the SCPR, that these folks are not small letter "d"emocrats.

In making the process more burdensome, Ohio legislators feed the growing disenchantment that many of us have with partisan political parties and their "card-carrying" members, especially the elected officials.

However, political party negativity is offset by civic groups like Common Cause and the coalition of civic partners helping with the redistricting petition initiative.

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