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Monday, April 18, 2011

Ohio Population Shifts Toward GOP

Posted By on Mon, Apr 18, 2011 at 11:10 AM

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With Republicans set to put scalpel to map this year to redistrict the Buckeye State, more data from the 2010 Census continues to emerge that paints a cloudy picture for Democrats.

Cleveland lost a chunk of residents in the last ten years, and it looks like Dennis! Kucinich will be without a district as the GOP divvy up land to Marcia Fudge and Betty Sutton. But as the Dayton Daily News points out, it's not just where those residents departed from that's important, it's also key to see where they went.

According to an analysis of the 2010 Census by the Dayton Daily News, the five districts currently held by Democrats lost a staggering 145,790 people since 2000 while the 13 Republicans districts gained 329,154.

Rep. Marcia Fudge, D-Cleveland, lost 90,298 people to reduce her district’s population to just over 540,000. Because the 16 new districts will each have an average of 721,032 people, GOP officials will have to radically change her district to add more than 180,000 people.

There are a couple of ways to look at this. First, that traditional blue strongholds are less so, hypothetically. On the other hand, as Haley Morris, a spokeswoman for the Democratic Congressional Campaign Committee in Washington, says, “the problem Republicans face is that losing two Democratic seats doesn’t mean losing Democratic voters. Why would Republicans want to make their members more vulnerable in a redistricting power grab?’’

More from the DDN:

David Wasserman, House editor for the nonpartisan Cook Political Report in Washington, predicted that the Republicans will draw a safe seat for Fudge, the state’s only black House member, fold Democrats Betty Sutton and Dennis Kucinich into the same district, and eliminate Johnson’s GOP district along the Ohio River.

“For Republicans to even attempt to eliminate two Democratic seats would be to create more problems than they would solve,’’ Wasserman said.

Wasserman’s map would leave the state with four Democrats — Marcy Kaptur of Toledo, Tim Ryan of Niles, Fudge and the winner of a Sutton-Kucinich primary.

That's just one guess, however. How the Johns (Kasich and Boehner) will slice and dice Ohio is still up in the air as a summer of contentious negotiations and politicking precede the GOP's final plan, which must be finalized by Decembeer 7. Click on through and read the whole piece for yourself, if for no other reason than it'll likely be the only news you read today that uses the phrase, "gerrymandering racist."

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