Local elected officials discuss Ohio redistricting

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WARREN, Ohio (WKBN) — The Youngstown-Warren Regional Chamber held a salute to elected officials in Warren Monday night.

Ohio Senate President Matt Huffman was the main speaker. He is part of the redistricting commission that approved the new state and congressional maps.

Republicans say the map is fair and represents Ohio.

“About the past 30 years there’s been, outside of the federal offices, about 85-90% of the seats have been won by Republicans,” Huffman said.

Others said that’s not true and the map is unfair.

“This state is not 90% Republican. That is not a fair map. That is an F,” said Representative Michele Lepore-Hagan.

While both lawmakers disagree if the map follows the Ohio Issue 1 on redistricting procedures, they both would not be surprised if lawsuits follow.

“Every map that has been passed and enacted for the last 40 or 50 years, somebody has filed a lawsuit,” Huffman said.

“And that needs to go to court. That needs to be determined in a different situation, right now,” Lepore-Hagan said.

Senator Huffman said it’s a good thing that Mahoning, Trumbull and Mahoning counties are now in the same district.

Rep. Lepore-Hagan said the area will get watered down with the rest of the area Congressman Bill Johnson controls.

Both stressed the importance of next year’s election because the governor, secretary of state and auditor are part of the redistricting commission.

“If for no other reason, the map is only for four years. So this map can change dramatically if the voters decide next year, well we’re going to have a new secretary of state, a new auditor, a new governor,” Huffman said.

“We need to get people out to vote and understand why you need to vote on a party line,” Lepore-Hagan said.

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