U.S. Rep. Marcy Kaptur (D., Toledo), on returning to Toledo Friday night, said the new 9th District boundaries are “good for our community.”
The Ohio General Assembly last week approved a congressional redistricting plan for the state that eliminates some of the most despised features of an earlier plan that split Toledo and Lucas County among three congressional districts.
The new plan still splits Lucas County in two, and then follows Lake Erie all the way to west Cleveland. Miss Kaptur gets most of west Toledo, from about Jackman Road east, and south Toledo from Reynolds Road and roughly Glendale Avenue. Miss Kaptur said it unifies both of the University of Toledo campuses in her district.
U.S. Rep. Bob Latta (R., Bowling Green) whose current 5th Congressional district includes the southwestern corner of Lucas County, will pick up all of western Lucas County, including Sylvania, Maumee, Ottawa Hills, and west and south Toledo.
The district also shifts the balance of the 721,032 people in the 9th District somewhat to the west where she is well known, by adding between 60,000 and 100,000 people in the city of Toledo, and reducing Lorain and Cuyahoga counties by similar numbers. That change favors her politically in the primary if Rep. Dennis Kucinich (D., Cleveland) decides to stay in the contest. Mr. Kucinich filed by the Dec. 7 deadline to run in the 9th District because his district was eliminated by the Republican-controlled legislature.
However, a new filing deadline has been established — Dec. 30.
Neither Mr. Kucinich nor his staff returned phone calls seeking comment.
Miss Kaptur said it will be expensive to advertise in both the Toledo and Cleveland media markets. She’s reaching out to her friends and supporters who have connections in Cuyahoga County, where about 320,000 of the new district population lives, to help her get known among Democratic voters there before the start of early voting in the March 6 primary in about 40 days.
Republican opponent Samuel “Joe the Plumber” Wurzelbacher, of Springfield Township, did not return a phone call seeking his comment on the new district outlines.