Ohio, Michigan have plans to revise district maps

(AP) - A look at proposed redistricting initiatives that have been approved to appear on statewide ballots this year or for which supporters have collected signatures in an attempt to qualify them. Other proposals are earlier in the initiative process.

OHIO

Issue: Proposed constitutional amendment on May 8 ballot affecting congressional redistricting.

Status quo: Congress: 12 Republicans, four Democrats.

Current process: State Legislature passes a redistricting plan by a majority vote, subject to a gubernatorial veto.

Proposed process: State Legislature passes a redistricting plan by a three-fifths majority with support of at least half the members of the majority and minority parties, subject to a gubernatorial veto. If that fails, districts are drawn by a seven-member commission composed of two majority and two minority party lawmakers, the governor, auditor and secretary of state; approval requires four votes, including two each from majority and minority party commissioners. If that fails, the Legislature may pass a plan by a three-fifths vote with the support of at least one-third of the majority and minority party members, subject to a gubernatorial veto. If that fails, the Legislature may pass a plan by a majority subject to a gubernatorial veto, but it would remain in effect for only four years instead of 10.

Proposed Criteria: Districts must protect racial minority voting rights, be compact and contiguous and limit the number of counties and cities that are split among multiple districts.

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MICHIGAN

Issue: Petition signatures submitted for a proposed constitutional amendment on the Nov. 6 ballot affecting congressional and state legislative redistricting.

Status quo: Congress: nine Republicans, four Democrats, one vacancy. State Senate: 27 Republicans, 11 Democrats. State House: 63 Republicans, 47 Democrats.

Current process: State Legislature passes redistricting plans by a majority vote, subject to a gubernatorial veto.

Proposed process: Districts would be drawn by a 13-member citizens' commission, composed of four Democrats, four Republicans and five independents randomly selected by the secretary of state from among applicants. Approval of districts would require a majority vote with support of at least two Democrats, two Republicans and two independents. If that fails, each commissioner would submit a plan and rank their options by preference, with the highest-ranked plan prevailing. In case of a tie, the secretary of state would randomly select the final plan.

Proposed criteria: Districts must be compact, contiguous, limit splitting of counties and cities, "reflect the state's diverse population and communities of interest," not favor or disfavor incumbents and not provide a disproportionate advantage to any political party.