At this November's election, Ohioans will be voting on State Issue 2, which is the constitutional amendment that changes the way the state draws legislative and congressional maps. I urge a no vote on this constitutional amendment.
There is a serious problem with this proposed constitutional amendment. It interjects the judiciary directly into the legislative and politically charged process of drawing legislative and congressional district maps. It undermines the important constitutional doctrine of the separation of powers in that it provides that judges of the appellate courts select those who will draw the maps. It makes judges and the courts more vulnerable to political influence. This is not a roll in which judges should be engaged. Their role is to fairly and impartially consider legal disputes.
The Ohio State Bar Association and the Ohio Judicial Conference together with other organizations oppose this proposed constitutional amendment on these bases. I, like many, believe that the current redistricting process needs to be changed. However, Issue 2 is not the right way to do it. I urge a No vote on Issue 2.
EDITOR'S NOTE: James Sillery is Ohio State Bar Association District 17 Board of Governors representative.