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jimrtex
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« on: June 27, 2011, 12:13:36 pm »
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Some groups involved with the previous 2009 Ohio redistricting competition are planning a new contest beginning this Friday (July 1) - though with no involvement of the Secretary of State.

Ohio Redistricting Contest
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« Reply #1 on: June 27, 2011, 11:28:16 pm »
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Some groups involved with the previous 2009 Ohio redistricting competition are planning a new contest beginning this Friday (July 1) - though with no involvement of the Secretary of State.

Ohio Redistricting Contest

The congressional districts in Ohio will most surely be drawn to benefit the Republicans as they will be drawn by the far-righters currently running the General Assembly.  However, I'm cautiously optimistic that SOS Husted will be able to insert at least some degree of fairness into Ohio's legislative redistricting.  He has been a vocal supporter of fairness in redistricting in the past and he has shown recently that he is willing to stand up to powerful people in his party when it comes to performing his job responsibly.
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jimrtex
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« Reply #2 on: June 28, 2011, 08:06:18 am »
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Some groups involved with the previous 2009 Ohio redistricting competition are planning a new contest beginning this Friday (July 1) - though with no involvement of the Secretary of State.

Ohio Redistricting Contest

The congressional districts in Ohio will most surely be drawn to benefit the Republicans as they will be drawn by the far-righters currently running the General Assembly.  However, I'm cautiously optimistic that SOS Husted will be able to insert at least some degree of fairness into Ohio's legislative redistricting.  He has been a vocal supporter of fairness in redistricting in the past and he has shown recently that he is willing to stand up to powerful people in his party when it comes to performing his job responsibly.
The constitutional requirements for legislative redistricting are pretty limiting (so far the contest rules only restate the constitution).

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« Reply #3 on: July 10, 2011, 07:56:39 am »
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A fair redistricting competition? Is this good enough to enter? If so, be my guest, people. If I'm seeing things right, only split towns are Colerain (huge township in suburban Cinci, with vastly different demographics between the eastern and western parts) and the city of Columbus. Possibly some of those dreadfully weird shaped suburbs of Columbus as well. Yeah, none in Cuyahoga. Numbered clockwise from Cincinnati.



1 (Cincinnati city) 65% White, 28% Black, 55.3% Obama. Chabot
Probably gone for Republicans, possibly not though.
2 (Cincinnaty suburbs) 87% White, 64.3% McCain. Boehner, Schmidt
Boehner gets the seat, obviously.
3 (Dayton) 76% White, 17% Black, 49.7% McCain. Turner, Austria
Turner gets the seat, and is perfectly safe even in his current more Democratic seat.
4 (Western) 92% White, 61.7% McCain. Jordan
Not much to see here
5 (North Central) 92% White, 56.4% McCain. open
Latta represents a lot of this area, and his home in Bowling Green is not far outside. He probably moves here.
6 (Toledo) 78% White, 13% Black, 60.2% Obama. Kaptur, Latta
See above re Latta
7 (West Cuyahoga - Lorain) 86% White, 55.9% Obama. open
Kucinich will want it, but I doubt he'd win the primary. Which is just as well from a democratic safety POV.
8 (Cleveland city) 50% Black, 39% White, 82.3% Obama. Fudge, Kucinich
Fudge's, obviously. 49.7% is as Black as you can get it without split towns. Draw it precinct-by-precinct and allow a crossing into Twinsburg, and you can get to over 50.0 on total population, but not VAP. That seems indeed to require branching out to Akron, which is obviously inacceptable from a CoI POV. This'll be safe for Fudge, anyways.
9 (Lake - Ashtabula - etc) 91% White, 49.7% McCain. LaTourette
Safe enough for him.
10 (Akron) 84% White, 11% Black, 55.9% Obama. Sutton, Renacci
Sutton wins.
11 (Youngstown - Steubenville) 86% White, 56.7% Obama. Ryan
Safe as houses.
12 (Canton) 92% White, 50.3% McCain. Gibbs
Loads of new territory, and not a safe seat by any measure, but he's evidently favored.
13 (Southeast) 95% White, 52.9% McCain. Johnson
Dem traditions, but should be secure barring events.
14 (South Central - Springfield) 93% White, 57.6% McCain. open
I really, really don't know where best to place the Simpsons, this seems far from ideal but better than the alternatives. (With Dayton would be best... except that doing so requires randomly chopping off Dayton suburbs.) Schmidt represents much of this territory and might run here.
15 (Columbus West) 81% White, 51.5% Obama. Stivers?
Not sure where Stivers lives; this one is much his better bet to hang on. Yeah, it's the western part of the city, not the southern one; paired with western, southern and eastern suburbs. Design due to a desire to keep the Black parts all in one seat even though I split the city, with the swingyness of this seat a curious by-product.
16 (Columbus East - Delaware) 61% White, 29% Black, 59.8% Obama. Tiberi
Tiberi is well entrenched, but he won't win this.
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« Reply #4 on: July 10, 2011, 09:03:34 am »
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Yah, they want unsplit counties, I focussed on unsplit towns. 'Specially as Ohio has a number of them that cross county lines.
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« Reply #5 on: July 12, 2011, 09:12:36 pm »
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Yah, they want unsplit counties, I focussed on unsplit towns. 'Specially as Ohio has a number of them that cross county lines.
In the previous contest you could use split towns to game the rules.

If Springfield were split between Homer and Simpson counties, you could place the district boundary on the county line, dividing Springfield; or you could include all of Springfield in a district containing all of Homer County, and Simpson County would not be considered split.  Or you could include all of Springfield in with Simpson County and Homer County would not be split.

The net effect is that the two parts of Springfield could be considered counties for balancing population and not cause split counties, as well as other characteristics.  IIRC, Middletown barely extends into Warren County, so it was possible to have an extension of Warren County come into Butler, leaving the rest of Butler County in a different district.

County fragments were counted based on areas that were part of a county and part of a district, except when all of one or two districts were wholly contained in a county, the remnant would not be considered to form a county fragment.   So if one district was wholly in Hamilton County, and the remnant was in one district, that remnant was not a county fragment.

If you split a smaller county, it counted as two fragments.  But if you bring another district into the county, it only creates a 3rd fragment.  So there was an incentive to concentrate splits, particularly in counties with significant population, since you could manipulate the population used in other districts.  So Summit and Montgomery might be inviting targets, and possibly Cuyahoga and Franklin.

But they didn't really care about towns.  Once you had decided to split a county, you could draw the lines anywhere.  I did a lot of flipping of black precincts in Columbus to get one district to a 50-50 D:R which appeared to be counted as a tie for determining a fair outcome and it happened that 9.5 to 8.5 split was the closest to the statewide ratio.

The Columbus area was messy because of the townships that have been eviscerated by Columbus annexations.  The townships still exist and so have election precincts, but the election precincts are not self contiguous.  This is also true of Columbus itself, which looks like wards were defined assuming that Columbus had annexed all the holes, and precinct boundaries then jumped across the holes.
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« Reply #6 on: July 14, 2011, 05:27:18 pm »
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Haven't seen any discussion of Ohio yet.  I was looking at the state constitution's requirements for house and senate districts and I believe that they are impossible to fulfill. 

http://www.legislature.state.oh.us/constitution.cfm?Part=11

Any county which is over one house seat but less than one senate seat is required to be kept whole in one senate seat.  Same goes for the "leftovers" from any county that has more than one senate seat - they must be kept whole.  Cuyahoga County has 3 senate seats plus 2/3 of a seat.  Lake County is at 2/3 of a seat, so it can't take Cuyahoga's leftovers.  This means Lake's senate seat has to go into either Geauga or Ashtabula only. 

However, Portage, Mahoning, and Trumbull are all bigger than one house seat and smaller than one senate seat - yet they are all too big to combine two into one senate seat.  Thus Trumbull, being hemmed in by the other two counties, also has to have its senate seat go into Geauga or Ashtabula only.  However, there is not enough population in Lake + Geauga + Ashtabula + Trumbull to support two senate seats. 

So... anyone want to tell me how a state constitution is interpreted when its clauses come into conflict with one another and with reality? 
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« Reply #7 on: July 15, 2011, 09:12:20 am »
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Haven't seen any discussion of Ohio yet.  I was looking at the state constitution's requirements for house and senate districts and I believe that they are impossible to fulfill. 

http://www.legislature.state.oh.us/constitution.cfm?Part=11

Any county which is over one house seat but less than one senate seat is required to be kept whole in one senate seat.  Same goes for the "leftovers" from any county that has more than one senate seat - they must be kept whole.  Cuyahoga County has 3 senate seats plus 2/3 of a seat.  Lake County is at 2/3 of a seat, so it can't take Cuyahoga's leftovers.  This means Lake's senate seat has to go into either Geauga or Ashtabula only. 

However, Portage, Mahoning, and Trumbull are all bigger than one house seat and smaller than one senate seat - yet they are all too big to combine two into one senate seat.  Thus Trumbull, being hemmed in by the other two counties, also has to have its senate seat go into Geauga or Ashtabula only.  However, there is not enough population in Lake + Geauga + Ashtabula + Trumbull to support two senate seats. 

So... anyone want to tell me how a state constitution is interpreted when its clauses come into conflict with one another and with reality? 
You have to draw the House seats first, and then create the senate seats.  The constitution does not require smaller counties to be kept whole, so Ashatabula may get split up in interesting ways.

Otherwise, I think the redistricting board could choose to have 2 senate districts go outside of Cuyahoga County or to split Lake County.
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« Reply #8 on: July 15, 2011, 10:33:07 am »
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Haven't seen any discussion of Ohio yet.  I was looking at the state constitution's requirements for house and senate districts and I believe that they are impossible to fulfill. 

http://www.legislature.state.oh.us/constitution.cfm?Part=11

Any county which is over one house seat but less than one senate seat is required to be kept whole in one senate seat.  Same goes for the "leftovers" from any county that has more than one senate seat - they must be kept whole.  Cuyahoga County has 3 senate seats plus 2/3 of a seat.  Lake County is at 2/3 of a seat, so it can't take Cuyahoga's leftovers.  This means Lake's senate seat has to go into either Geauga or Ashtabula only. 

However, Portage, Mahoning, and Trumbull are all bigger than one house seat and smaller than one senate seat - yet they are all too big to combine two into one senate seat.  Thus Trumbull, being hemmed in by the other two counties, also has to have its senate seat go into Geauga or Ashtabula only.  However, there is not enough population in Lake + Geauga + Ashtabula + Trumbull to support two senate seats. 

So... anyone want to tell me how a state constitution is interpreted when its clauses come into conflict with one another and with reality? 
You have to draw the House seats first, and then create the senate seats.  The constitution does not require smaller counties to be kept whole, so Ashatabula may get split up in interesting ways.

Otherwise, I think the redistricting board could choose to have 2 senate districts go outside of Cuyahoga County or to split Lake County.


I understand that the senate seats are supposed to be comprised of house seats, and that Geauga and/or Ashtabula may be split.  It's still impossible to be in 100% compliance, for the reasons I described. 

My question is, how is the board supposed to decide which of the provisions are bendable and which are not? 
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« Reply #9 on: July 15, 2011, 10:47:12 am »
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You might come up with an example to help lesser minds ponder more concretely what you see as the conundrum dmapper.  Just a thought.
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« Reply #10 on: July 15, 2011, 01:19:09 pm »
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I suppose I could... but it would basically require the same sort of textual explanation to know what was going on.  And the point of my post was not to ask *whether* the constitution requires an impossibility, but to ask the legal question of what the requirements are if it does.  Does the Ohio Supreme Court get to decide what comes "closest" to fulfilling the requirements, does the entire clause become ignorable, do earlier sentences within the clause take precedence over later sentences? 
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jimrtex
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« Reply #11 on: July 15, 2011, 10:15:46 pm »
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I suppose I could... but it would basically require the same sort of textual explanation to know what was going on.  And the point of my post was not to ask *whether* the constitution requires an impossibility, but to ask the legal question of what the requirements are if it does.  Does the Ohio Supreme Court get to decide what comes "closest" to fulfilling the requirements, does the entire clause become ignorable, do earlier sentences within the clause take precedence over later sentences? 
I would draw 11 whole house districts in Cuyahoga and 2 in Lake, and then draw two additional districts (Ashtabula .871, Lake .023, Geauga .081), and (Geauga .720, Cuyahoga .256).   The fractions are relative to the ideal district population of 116,530.

The 15 districts would average .9754 of the ideal population, or 1/2 of the allowed deviation.

When challenged, I would argue that 11.08 only sets a minimum number of whole districts in Cuyahoga and Lake, and does not prevent creation of another.   If Cuyahoga had 1754 more people, it would be entitled to 11 whole districts plus a fraction; and there is nothing that says the whole districts use up the exact whole-district entitlement.

This plan would totally comply with the spirit of the constitution, since the remnant of the population of Lake and Cuyahoga counties are contained in a single house district.

A variant would keep Lake in 2 districts, and take the bare minimum from Cuyahoga to get Geauga + Ashtabula up to the equivalent of 0.95x2 population (about 26,000), and form the remainder of Cuyahoga into 11 districts.

Alternatively, I would argue that equal protection renders other restrictions unconstitutional and are severed to the extent necessary to create a plan.  I create three house districts from Ashtabula, Geauga, and Portage, and then split Portage between two senate districts.

This violates 11.11, but only in dividing Trumbull, and the spirit of the constitution is to split smaller counties when necessary.

You  could create another senate district from Trumbull, the full district part of Portage, and a remainder of Stark, but that would require a Trumbull-Stark district.

So instead:

Geauga 801, Ashtabula 199 (with 2 Cuyahoga)

Ashtabula 672, Trumbull 328 (with 2 Lake)

Trumbull 1000,
Trumbull 477, Mahoning 523
Mahoning 1000

remnant Mahoning 526

Summit and Portage for 2 senate districts.

Stark for 1 senate district with a small remnant.

Lorain and Huron for 1 senate district.

Medina, Wayna, and Ashland for 1 senate district.

So basically constitution is largely ignored in Trumbull and Mahoning, but end up with Youngstown centered senate district.
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« Reply #12 on: July 16, 2011, 08:27:29 am »
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I would draw 11 whole house districts in Cuyahoga and 2 in Lake, and then draw two additional districts (Ashtabula .871, Lake .023, Geauga .081), and (Geauga .720, Cuyahoga .256).   The fractions are relative to the ideal district population of 116,530.

The 15 districts would average .9754 of the ideal population, or 1/2 of the allowed deviation.

When challenged, I would argue that 11.08 only sets a minimum number of whole districts in Cuyahoga and Lake, and does not prevent creation of another.   If Cuyahoga had 1754 more people, it would be entitled to 11 whole districts plus a fraction; and there is nothing that says the whole districts use up the exact whole-district entitlement.

This plan would totally comply with the spirit of the constitution, since the remnant of the population of Lake and Cuyahoga counties are contained in a single house district.

A variant would keep Lake in 2 districts, and take the bare minimum from Cuyahoga to get Geauga + Ashtabula up to the equivalent of 0.95x2 population (about 26,000), and form the remainder of Cuyahoga into 11 districts.

Agreed.  Creating compliant house districts is relatively easy, especially with the 5% leeway.  It's making sure you can combine them into legal senate districts that is hard. 

Quote
Alternatively, I would argue that equal protection renders other restrictions unconstitutional and are severed to the extent necessary to create a plan.  I create three house districts from Ashtabula, Geauga, and Portage, and then split Portage between two senate districts.

This violates 11.11, but only in dividing Trumbull, and the spirit of the constitution is to split smaller counties when necessary.

Dividing Portage, you mean.  I guess that's a reasonable application of the principles - if you have to violate the constitution, do so by dividing the smallest county possible. 
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« Reply #13 on: July 16, 2011, 05:18:02 pm »
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You might come up with an example to help lesser minds ponder more concretely what you see as the conundrum dmapper.  Just a thought.



Ohio requires that when a county has more than enough population for one house district, that the whole number of districts be created in the county, with the remnant formed in one district that is combined to form a house district with other counties or parts of counties.

The above maps shows the population in terms of house districts.  So for example, Portage County would require one house district entirely in the county, with the remnant combined with other districts.  While it is desirable that smaller counties not be divided, it is not required, so that Geauga and Ashtabula can be hacked apart if necessary to equalize populations.  If you look at the existing map, you will see that is done quite regularly.  After we get outside the NE population concentration we will have a lot more flexibility since we can make fairly arbitrary splits of small counties.

There is a special rule that applies to counties like Columbiana.  If the population is equivalent to 0.90 to 1.10 districts, it may be formed into a single house district.  Otherwise, districts are allowed to vary from 0.95 t0 1.05 of the ideal population.

Senate districts are comprised of 3 house districts.  Counties with more than one district must be in a single senate district.  So Lorain, Medina, Lake, Portage, Trumbull, and Mahoning must be contained in one senate district.

For larger counties, such as Cuyahoga, Summit, and Stark, as many senate districts must be formed in the county, with the remainder in a single senate district.

It would be fairly easy to meet these rules with some counties.  For example, Summit could have 4 house districts, Portage one, and one district combining parts of the two counties.  These districts would only be 0.6% over the ideal population.   There could be one senate district comprised of 3 Summit house districts, and another comprised of the remaining Summit house district, the Portage district, and the Summit-Portage district.

Dmapper's conundrum relates to Cuyahoga and Lake counties.  Cuyahoga would be entitled to 11 house districts and Lake to 2 house districts.  Cuyahoga also would have 3 senate districts formed from 9 of its house districts.  A 4th senate district must be comprised of the other two house districts and one other house district.  Similarly the two Lake house districts must form a senate district with one other house district.

Lorain and Medina must be in a single senate district, so they can't be paired with Cuyahoga.  The remnant of Summit is larger than a house district.  Portage and Trumbull must be contained in a single senate district as well.  So the only source of the two house districts to be paired with Cuyahoga and Lake, are Geauga and Ashtabula, but they have insufficient population to form two house districts.

We can make the districts in Cuyahoga and Lake a little bit smaller than the ideal.  Then we can take the remainder of Cuyahoga, Lake, along with Geuaga and Ashtabula to form two house districts of sufficient population.  Overall, the 15 house districts would average 2.5% below the ideal.

If we could use the remnant from Portage, we would have quite close to an ideal population for 15 house districts.  But this would split Portage between two senate districts.  Moreover, it would cause problems with Trumbull which has too much population to be placed in the same senate district with Mahoning.

We could place Trumbull and Portage in the same senate district, but that would have a deviation of 6.3% for the senate district, and at least that for the 3 senate districts.

At this point, you might be able convince the SCOTUS that such deviation is necessary in order to comply with the other standards of the state constitution.  But you might not be able to convince the Ohio Supreme Court, since he 5% limit is in the state constitution, with a singular exception.  If the People wanted to allow a larger deviation in other cases, they would have placed it in the constitution.

At this point you have to start ignoring certain rules.  If you took the remnant of Portage and used it with Geauga and Ashtabula to form the two house districts that Lake and Cuyahoga need, then Trumbull, the whole Portage house district and the remnant of Stark could form a senate district.  But that would spit Portage between senate districts, and require a Trumbull-Stark house district.

So the best solution might be to carve a small part of Portage or Trumbull and use that with Geauga and Ashtabula.  Then form a senate district from Portage and Trumbull.  This will violate two provisions of the constitution.  It will split either Portage or Trumbull between three house districts, and also split that county between 2 senate districts.

But the argument will be made that equal protection trumps the county line provisions.  The Ohio AG will argue on behalf of the redistricting board that they made a rational and prudent reconciliation of the various provisions of the constitution.  Depending on the partisan composition of the Ohio Supreme Court, they will either approve or reject the map.

The final map then is:

Cuyahoga + Geauga: 12 house districts and 4 senate districts.    About 21,000 persons will be added to Geauga to form one house district, with the other 11 in Cuyahoga.

Lake + Asthtabula + 20,000 from Trumbull: 3 house districts and one senate district.  Two house districts are in Lake, and the other is Ashtabula-Trumbull.  With this format we avoid splitting both Geauga and Ashtabula counties.

Remainder of Trumbull + Portage: 3 house districts and one senate district.  A house district in each county, plus one that crosses the county line.  This is where our constitutional violation lies.  The 20,000 people from Trumbull shifted north are in a different senate district, and Trumbull is split between 3 house districts.

Mahoning and Columbiana: 1 senate district, with 2 house districts in Mahoning and 1 in Columbiana.

Summit and Medina: 2 senate districts and 6 house districts.  One senate district and 4 house districts in Summit, one house district in Medina.

Lorain + Huron: 1 senate district and 3 House districts,  We could also use Ashland, or split Erie, though since a county split is not needed it might be unconstitutional.

Stark: 1 senate district and 3 house districts.  About 25,000 persons in Stark county added to a house district further south.

In SW Ohio:

Hamilton, Clermont, Brown: 3 senate districts.  7 house districts in Hamilton, one in Clermont, and one in Clermont-Brown.

Butler, Warren, Clinton, Fayette, Highland: 2 senate districts.  3 house and 1 senate in Butler, 1 house in Warren, 1 in Warren with a bit of Butler, and one house district in the 3 small counties, so the eastern senate district is a tiny bit of Butler, Warren and the three smaller counties.

Montgomery, Green: 2 senate districts, with 4 house districts in Montgomery, 1 in Greene, and one across the county line.

Franklin: 10 house districts, 3 senate districts.  The extra house district goes with two house districts outside Franklin.

Lucas: 3+ house districts.  One senate district, and total flexibility with the remnant.
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« Reply #14 on: July 16, 2011, 11:25:12 pm »
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jimrtex put it well.  I'd quibble with one thing, which is that Cuyahoga's excess could theoretically be paired with Medina.  If the first 10 house districts in Cuyahoga are drawn 5% larger than average, then they take up 10.5; the remaining ~.5 of a district can be paired with Medina's .5 excess.  Then one full Cuyahoga district, one full Medina district, and the Cuyahoga/Medina split district will make one Senate seat.  Not that this solves the Lake/Trumbull problem, though. 

If I were the GOP I'd go to the court *before* drawing any maps and ask them to decide which clauses take precedence, and how.  That way you get rid of all uncertainty and Democrats don't get to pick and choose their arguments. 
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« Reply #15 on: July 17, 2011, 07:57:20 am »
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jimrtex put it well.  I'd quibble with one thing, which is that Cuyahoga's excess could theoretically be paired with Medina.  If the first 10 house districts in Cuyahoga are drawn 5% larger than average, then they take up 10.5; the remaining ~.5 of a district can be paired with Medina's .5 excess.  Then one full Cuyahoga district, one full Medina district, and the Cuyahoga/Medina split district will make one Senate seat.  Not that this solves the Lake/Trumbull problem, though. 

If I were the GOP I'd go to the court *before* drawing any maps and ask them to decide which clauses take precedence, and how.  That way you get rid of all uncertainty and Democrats don't get to pick and choose their arguments. 
Cuyahoga + Medina is 12.469 house districts.  At some point, it may be questionable whether you may apportion 12 districts to an area that is entitled to essentially 12-1/2, just because the error is less than 5%.  You would be following the rules, but have lost sight of the underlying principle.

You could give Cuyahoga + Summit with a population of 15.643 house districts 15 house districts with an average deviation of 4.2% as well.

Republicans have a 5-2 majority on the redistricting board.  It is their responsibility to draw a plan.  Even if the Ohio Supreme Court were to overturn the plan they would have the responsibility to draw a new plan.  Any plaintiff would have to demonstrate that there is a constitutional alternative, or if there are none, that the plan by the redistricting board is irrational and arbitrary (or whatever other standard the court would apply).

11.13 says that any reapportionment cases go directly to the Ohio Supreme Court, rather than a lower court and then appealed to the court.  They won't decide that any of the apportionment provisions are unconstitutional per se, but only when applied to the 2010 data.  The 3-way split of Portage or Trumbull is the least worst alternative, as far as complying with constitution.  If you split Trumbull, you avoid splitting Geauga, which is preferred by the constitution.

The only other alternative that I see would require a Trumbull-Stark house district.  And I suspect that a court would not approve a discontiguous district.
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« Reply #16 on: July 17, 2011, 09:51:22 am »
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Cuyahoga + Medina is 12.469 house districts.  At some point, it may be questionable whether you may apportion 12 districts to an area that is entitled to essentially 12-1/2, just because the error is less than 5%.  You would be following the rules, but have lost sight of the underlying principle.

I remember reading that NYC was given two more Assembly seats than it's population warrented in 2001 by taking advantage of the 5% rule, and that the Senate (even counting prisoners in the prisons where they lived as of the 2000 census which was then the standard (and still is according to some)) had like an extra half a Senate district upstate.  Of course, that was before the sucessful challenge of the legislative redistricting plans in Georgia.
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« Reply #17 on: July 18, 2011, 08:25:12 am »
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OK, here's a first draft of a GOP gerrymander in which the only constitutional violation is that Portage will be in two separate senate districts. 

Orange Cleveland blob is 6 house seats which will be turned into 2 senate seats, all safe Dem. 

Blue/Purple/Green are 3 house seats, to be turned into 1 senate seat, all various degrees of lean GOP.  Blue is 50.7-48.3 Obama, and basically did not change from its current incarnation.  Purple is 48.6-50.1 Obama-McCain.  Green is 52.0-46.5 Obama-McCain. 

Teal seat in east Cuyahoga is 58.2-41.0 Obama-McCain.  Whoever had that seat for the GOP is probably screwed; apologies (unless they lived in the part that got sliced off and put into the green seat).  The cyan seat that snakes from Cleveland down the west side of Akron is 50.0-48.7 O-M.  The bronze Akron suburbs seat is 47.1-51.7 O-M.  These three seats together (which are barely contiguous by going all the way around Akron!) form one senate seat which is a very slight GOP lean at 51.8% Obama - which might not be that different from the current Summit-only GOP-held senate seat but that's just a guess.  In the middle of Summit county in bluish gray is one senate seat to be divided into 3 house seats (probably 2 of which will be solid Dem and 1 at a very slight lean Dem - I think I can get one at 53.9% Obama). 

All of the aforementioned house seats are 4%+ above ideal. 

The aquamarine Geauga-Portage seat is safe GOP at 54.6% McCain.  It gets matched with the two Lake County districts (not drawn; probably one is lean GOP and one is a toss-up) for a lean GOP senate seat. 

The purple Geauga-Ashtabula seat is lean GOP at 51.2-46.9 O-M.  Probably a better seat for the GOP Ashtabula rep than his current one.  The grey Ashtabula-Trumbull district is actually a tossup at 52.7-45 O-M (currently held by a Democrat) since I was able to stuff the pink district with Niles, Warren and Sharon.  These three seats form one senate seat that will be safe D. 

Red Portage district is safe D, and will be combined with the two Mahoning house seats to form a safe D senate seat. 

From here on out things are pretty easy to draw.  One additional benefit is that the Dem-held senate seat based in Jefferson County might be able to be made swingier since Republican Carroll County is no longer tied to Mahoning. 

Final analysis: Dems go from 11 in Summit/Cuyahoga to 9.5-10, though, and lose one Senate seat.  They also get a weakened outer Trumbull house district and a weakened Jefferson Cty senate seat.  GOP trades their S+E Cuyahoga district for a swingier district that's strictly South Cuyahoga, and makes one of their Summit districts a toss-up/lean D (although how strong their previous Summit districts were, I have no idea), but otherwise is unaffected. 

Now someone is going to tell me that I've placed 4 GOP incumbents in the same district... Smiley
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« Reply #18 on: July 18, 2011, 11:46:57 am »
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OK, here's a first draft of a GOP gerrymander in which the only constitutional violation is that Portage will be in two separate senate districts. 

Orange Cleveland blob is 6 house seats which will be turned into 2 senate seats, all safe Dem. 

Blue/Purple/Green are 3 house seats, to be turned into 1 senate seat, all various degrees of lean GOP.  Blue is 50.7-48.3 Obama, and basically did not change from its current incarnation.  Purple is 48.6-50.1 Obama-McCain.  Green is 52.0-46.5 Obama-McCain. 

Teal seat in east Cuyahoga is 58.2-41.0 Obama-McCain.  Whoever had that seat for the GOP is probably screwed; apologies (unless they lived in the part that got sliced off and put into the green seat).  The cyan seat that snakes from Cleveland down the west side of Akron is 50.0-48.7 O-M.  The bronze Akron suburbs seat is 47.1-51.7 O-M.  These three seats together (which are barely contiguous by going all the way around Akron!) form one senate seat which is a very slight GOP lean at 51.8% Obama - which might not be that different from the current Summit-only GOP-held senate seat but that's just a guess.  In the middle of Summit county in bluish gray is one senate seat to be divided into 3 house seats (probably 2 of which will be solid Dem and 1 at a very slight lean Dem - I think I can get one at 53.9% Obama). 

All of the aforementioned house seats are 4%+ above ideal. 

The aquamarine Geauga-Portage seat is safe GOP at 54.6% McCain.  It gets matched with the two Lake County districts (not drawn; probably one is lean GOP and one is a toss-up) for a lean GOP senate seat. 

The purple Geauga-Ashtabula seat is lean GOP at 51.2-46.9 O-M.  Probably a better seat for the GOP Ashtabula rep than his current one.  The grey Ashtabula-Trumbull district is actually a tossup at 52.7-45 O-M (currently held by a Democrat) since I was able to stuff the pink district with Niles, Warren and Sharon.  These three seats form one senate seat that will be safe D. 

Red Portage district is safe D, and will be combined with the two Mahoning house seats to form a safe D senate seat. 

From here on out things are pretty easy to draw.  One additional benefit is that the Dem-held senate seat based in Jefferson County might be able to be made swingier since Republican Carroll County is no longer tied to Mahoning. 

Final analysis: Dems go from 11 in Summit/Cuyahoga to 9.5-10, though, and lose one Senate seat.  They also get a weakened outer Trumbull house district and a weakened Jefferson Cty senate seat.  GOP trades their S+E Cuyahoga district for a swingier district that's strictly South Cuyahoga, and makes one of their Summit districts a toss-up/lean D (although how strong their previous Summit districts were, I have no idea), but otherwise is unaffected. 

Now someone is going to tell me that I've placed 4 GOP incumbents in the same district... Smiley
I think you may get challenged under the VRA for creating all of the Cuyahoga and Summit districts at the upper end of the population limit at 4.2% deviation, and you still have not avoided violating the Ohio Constitution.  The districts to the east are 2.8% under, so you have a concentrated 7% differential.   It may be particularly contentious if you appear to have packed blacks into overpopulated districts.

The Summit-Cuyahoga house district, and the eastern Summit house district are not compact (Ohio Constitution 11.07(A)).  I'm not sure about the Geauga-Portage district.  Could the town south of Ravenna be shifted to the salmon district?  While senate districts are not required to be compact under the Ohio Constitution, it could be an issue under a VRA challenge.

Do the Cuyahoga and Summit house districts comply with 11.07(B) and 11.07(C) regarding splitting of towns and cities?

What happens if you simply put the Summit senate district in Akron and the southern part of the county, and then push the green district northward, making the cyan a simpler cross-border district, and the bronze district to the east or south of that.
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« Reply #19 on: July 18, 2011, 01:27:06 pm »
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I think you may get challenged under the VRA for creating all of the Cuyahoga and Summit districts at the upper end of the population limit at 4.2% deviation, and you still have not avoided violating the Ohio Constitution.  The districts to the east are 2.8% under, so you have a concentrated 7% differential.   It may be particularly contentious if you appear to have packed blacks into overpopulated districts.

The Summit-Cuyahoga house district, and the eastern Summit house district are not compact (Ohio Constitution 11.07(A)).  I'm not sure about the Geauga-Portage district.  Could the town south of Ravenna be shifted to the salmon district?  While senate districts are not required to be compact under the Ohio Constitution, it could be an issue under a VRA challenge.

Do the Cuyahoga and Summit house districts comply with 11.07(B) and 11.07(C) regarding splitting of towns and cities?

What happens if you simply put the Summit senate district in Akron and the southern part of the county, and then push the green district northward, making the cyan a simpler cross-border district, and the bronze district to the east or south of that.

Well, OK, compactness... but that's entirely subjective, and there are quite a few current districts that are almost as bad.  Similarly VRA violations are subjective as well.  It is true that the Cleveland and Akron black districts are larger than ideal... but so are the white districts.  

I believe I followed the township/city rules to the letter, but I suppose there might some splits that one could avoid with more cleverness.  

Re: your suggestion, I think the green district becomes very marginal for the GOP if it gets pushed any farther north and it might endanger the senate seat.  Meanwhile, exchanging south Summit for the Cuyahoga Falls and Twinsburg areas would probably tip the border-crossing senate seat into lean D territory.  So if that really was required I think the GOP would look to go in another direction.  
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« Reply #20 on: July 18, 2011, 04:25:52 pm »
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Well, OK, compactness... but that's entirely subjective, and there are quite a few current districts that are almost as bad.  Similarly VRA violations are subjective as well.  It is true that the Cleveland and Akron black districts are larger than ideal... but so are the white districts.  

I believe I followed the township/city rules to the letter, but I suppose there might some splits that one could avoid with more cleverness.  

Re: your suggestion, I think the green district becomes very marginal for the GOP if it gets pushed any farther north and it might endanger the senate seat.  Meanwhile, exchanging south Summit for the Cuyahoga Falls and Twinsburg areas would probably tip the border-crossing senate seat into lean D territory.  So if that really was required I think the GOP would look to go in another direction.  
So cyan is Walton Hills, Valley View, Cuyahoga Heights, Newburgh Heights, Brooklyn Heights, part of Parma, Brooklyn, Lindale, and Brecksvile?

Doesn't it also split New Franklin?  Aren't you permitted only one split per district, not one per district boundary?

If I can draw a plan that has the green district taking in all of Parma (and possibly Brooklyn and Lindale, though they could be shifted to the orange blob), and moving Seven Hills, Independence, Broadview Heights, and North Royalton, Strongsville or some combination thereof, don't I have to do so?  I have established feasibility if I can do so.

Do you have details of your Cuyahoga and Summit maps?

BTW, the redistricting contest is supposed to go live tomorrow.


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« Reply #21 on: July 19, 2011, 10:43:58 am »
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The contest rules include the following paragraph:

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Note: Participants may conclude that it is not possible to fully comply with the Ohio Constitutional requirements in a particular area of the state (specifically Ashtabula, Lake, Geauga, and Trumbull Counties). If so, participants should come as close to full compliance as possible, and note the inability to fully comply in a separate e-mail to ....

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« Reply #22 on: July 20, 2011, 10:16:04 am »
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The contest rules include the following paragraph:

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Note: Participants may conclude that it is not possible to fully comply with the Ohio Constitutional requirements in a particular area of the state (specifically Ashtabula, Lake, Geauga, and Trumbull Counties). If so, participants should come as close to full compliance as possible, and note the inability to fully comply in a separate e-mail to ....



You heard it here first, folks!  Smiley

On a related topic, is it just me or does the DistrictBuilder software tool really suck?  It looks pretty but I hate having to wait 15 seconds every time I add an area to a district for it to recalculate the stats (which I don't even use most of the time).  I'd have entered already if they just used DRA, but I don't think wrangling with DistrictBuilder is worth anybody's time. 
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jimrtex
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« Reply #23 on: July 21, 2011, 12:46:38 pm »
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On a related topic, is it just me or does the DistrictBuilder software tool really suck?  It looks pretty but I hate having to wait 15 seconds every time I add an area to a district for it to recalculate the stats (which I don't even use most of the time).  I'd have entered already if they just used DRA, but I don't think wrangling with DistrictBuilder is worth anybody's time.  
It is terribly slow.  It appears that you might be able to assign new districts while it is calculating - but I'm not 100% sure, I seem to have managed to get a few districts ahead of myself.  EDIT while typing this reply, the statistics did catch up.

A bigger problem is that I seem to have got locked up.  I was adding districts according to the numbering scheme of the constitution.  So I did the 5 single county districts and then added all of Cuyahoga as District 6 (eventually it will be 6-16).   Then Franklin was 17, etc.

After Hamilton, Summit, Montgomery, Lucas, Stark, Butler, and Lorain, I tried to do Mahoning as 59 (though only the 15th district) and it shows the county as a red outline indicating it locked, plus all the other districts are eliminated, but can be restored with redo.  I can select Lake and it does the same thing.  I can't seem to get past that.

I'm in the process of assigning individual incomplete districts in each county, and have to through 43 Montgomery.

There is an export and import facility in DistrictBuilder which I think is a csv block assignment list.  Can DRA export such a file?

There is a webinar at 5 pm EDT today which you might want to sign up for.
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« Reply #24 on: July 21, 2011, 08:20:27 pm »
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On a related topic, is it just me or does the DistrictBuilder software tool really suck?  It looks pretty but I hate having to wait 15 seconds every time I add an area to a district for it to recalculate the stats (which I don't even use most of the time).  I'd have entered already if they just used DRA, but I don't think wrangling with DistrictBuilder is worth anybody's time. 

Webinar postoned/cancelled in part due to slowness of software. 
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