John Kasich unloads on 'horrific' gerrymandering

Ohio Gov. John Kasich blasted the “horrific” gerrymandering of Congressional districts during a recent interview with Business Insider, saying it “further polarizes people.”

“All this gerrymandering has just carved people up into safe districts, but they’re not safe, because they have to fear primaries,” he told Business Insider Monday while on tour promoting “Two Paths: America Divided or United,” his new book.

“If you’re a Democrat, it’s from the left. If you’re a Republican, it’s from the right,” he said “So it further polarizes people. And then when you have the public, which is increasingly sort of knowledgeable about what’s happening, compromise [becomes] like evil. So the system is dysfunctional. Gerrymandering is horrific.”

Republicans currently hold a 238-193 majority in the House. That strong majority is somewhat due to the Congressional map that has been in place since the 2012 elections. In 2016, Republicans won about 51.5% of the House vote nationwide and more than 55% of the seats.

In Kasich’s state of Ohio, Republicans currently control 12 seats while Democrats hold four. Republicans captured 58.2% of the House vote in 2016, winning 75% of the seats.

There is currently a case before the Supreme Court that could have huge implications for gerrymandering moving forward. That case involves a bipartisan group of voting rights activists who say Wisconsin’s State Assembly district lines were gerrymandered so extremely that the GOP gained a large majority while losing the popular vote to the Democrats.

Kasich, who was a contender for the Republican presidential nomination in 2016, said he hopes the Supreme Court sides with the advocates.

“They have to draw more reasonable lines,” he said, adding that “we’re trying to do something about it in Ohio.”

Kasich then took a shot at what he believes to be a huge problem in presidential politics: “The role of money.”

“You get a handful of billionaires who can basically buy the White House,” he said of the campaign finance system he deemed “terrible.”

“It’s disgraceful,” he continued. “So the changes need to come.”

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