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Dems Want Redistricting Oversight

Some Democrats finally voted for a map that ended the drive for a threatened referendum but that doesn't mean they are happy with it. State Senator Charleta Tavares says Republicans tried to skirt the sunshine law by renting a room at a local hotel room to serve as the bunker for secret meetings while the process was going on.

This room was used by the Republicans on the apportionment board to draw maps for the state legislature as well as the congressional districts. 9,600 dollars for 3 months so that they could be in secret, they could use the room without minority leader Budish being a part of those deliberations and the public, most importantly, not being included in the discussion about how those lines were going to be drawn.

Tavares says the congressional map that passed the legislature this week still has 12 Republican districts and 4 Democrats ones. She says that's not representative of Ohioans. But Mike Dittoe with the Ohio House Republican Caucus says he's not worried about the Democrat's complaints to Ohio's legislative inspector general because the process was approved by him to begin with.

Our office and anyone associated with the map making sought the specific advice and counsel of the joint legislative ethics committee and Tony Bledsoe before contracts were drawn and before any map making processes were undertaken. We had specific guidance from him as to how to operate the entire process.

The Democrats say they also support efforts to put a constitutional issue before voters in the future to change the redistricting process to make it less political.

Rick Jackson is a senior host and producer at Ideastream Public Media. He hosts the "Sound of Ideas" on WKSU and "NewsDepth" on WVIZ.