WASHINGTON, D.C. — A proposed amendment to the Ohio Constitution that would implement an independent redistricting commission in the state suffered a setback yesterday after the group leading the proposal discovered a single typographical error in the amendment’s previously approved summary.
The full amendment text correctly stated that the proposed commission must adopt new legislative maps by Sept. 19, 2025. However, summary language describing the amendment erroneously listed the deadline as Sept. 15, 2025.
The mistake, though minor, means that Citizens Not Politicians — the group spearheading the initiative to create an independent redistricting commission in a state plagued with gerrymandered maps — must collect another 1,000 signatures and resubmit the language to Ohio Attorney General Dave Yost (R) for his approval in order to appear on the 2024 ballot.
Citizens Not Politicians proactively informed Yost of the mistake in a letter. Neither Yost nor the Ohio Ballot Board, both of whom approved the language, noticed the mistake. In a statement, the group said the “minor setback will slightly delay the start of signature gathering but changes nothing about the substance of the amendment, our resolve to end gerrymandering in Ohio, or our ability to get it done.”
While Ohio technically has had a redistricting commission since 2018, it has not produced fair maps. The Republican-dominated commission had previously passed five separate sets of legislative maps, all of which were struck down by the Ohio Supreme Court for being partisan gerrymanders, and just last month the commission, consisting only of elected officials, adopted new legislative maps heavily gerrymandered in favor of Republicans. (The congressional map, similarly drawn to advantage Republicans, faced legal challenges, which have since been dismissed by the groups originally challenging the map out of concern that an alternative to the current map could be even more gerrymandered toward the GOP.)
The proposed 15-member independent commission would consist entirely of citizens, and be split evenly between Democrats, Republicans and independents. If approved by voters in 2024, the amendment would be enshrined into the Ohio Constitution, and all of the state’s maps would be deemed void and have to be redrawn.