Congressional map to be redrawn

Pensacola News Journal | Pensacola News Journal | 07/10/2015

In a land mark ruling Thursday, the Florida Supreme Court ruled that the congressional map must be redrawn to eliminate partisan bias in eight districts.

The 5-2 Supreme Court ruling upheld an earlier trial court decision that the map violates a 2010 amendment to the Florida Constitution designed to eliminate “gerrymandering” — the practice of a political party or representatives in power manipulating district boundaries to favor or disfavor a party or incumbent.

The ruling said “the redistricting process and resulting map were ‘taint[ed]’ by unconstitutional intent to favor the Republican Party and incumbents.”

The Supreme Court will relinquish the case to the trial court for 100 days with directions that it require the Legislature to redraw, on an expedited basis, congressional districts in Central and South Florida.

The legislature was encouraged to make decisions on the new map in public, allow challengers a mechanism to submit alternate maps and preserve all emails related to the redrawing of the map.

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