Line in the Sand: FL Legislature Won't Repeal Redistricting Ruling

Public News Service | 07/16/2014

TALLAHASEE, Fla. - Florida’s Legislature will not repeal last week’s court ruling that struck down the state’s Congressional map that were drawn in 2012. Last week, a Leon County Circuit Court judge found the current district map unfairly favors Republicans.

Lines will be redrawn, but it’s still not known whether the new district lines will take effect this year, or in 2016.

Deirdre Macnab, president of the League of Women Voters of Florida, said her group’s attorneys are reviewing the ruling.

”These are giant leaps forward for citizens who should be paying close attention to this,” said Macnab. “Because it’s about having a real voice in an election and in their government.”

Macnab said the hope is that state’s representatives in Washington will be a more accurate reflection of the political makeup of Florida.

Florida voters passed the so-called ‘Fair Districts’ amendments in 2010, preventing parties or incumbents from redistricting advantages. But it left the authority to draw district lines with legislators.

Macnab said she hopes the recent ruling will provide additional guidance.

”Hopefully, these will be very important ‘teeth’ to the amendments that were passed,” said Macnab. “And the Legislature will begin to pay attention and serve with integrity with regard to the maps that they’re drawing. And follow the rules.”

The judge found fault with districts held by U.S. Rep. Corrine Brown and Rep. Dan Webster.

Legislators said they’d done nothing wrong during the hearing. But the judge ruled that the Republican leadership had engaged in a secret collaboration to redraw district lines to their advantage.

Copyright © 2014 Public News Service

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