Legislature back in town for third try on redistricting

James Call | Tallahassee Democrat | 10/19/2015

Senate Democratic Leader Arthenia Joyner said the three-week session could become a dogfight.

“You are talking about 40 different districts (and) then everybody has a vested interest in their own district,” said Joyner. “It’s not going to be Kumbaya, so we’ll see what happens.”

Currently Republicans hold a 26 – 14 advantage over Democrats in the Senate while Democrats enjoy a 400,000 voter edge in registration. Democrats have charged the GOP’s control of the statehouse stems from districts being drawn to favor Republicans.

The Senate conceded in July that it violated the 2010 Fair Districts amendment to the constitution that requires House and Senate districts be compact, contiguous and do not favor a candidate or party. The maps that will be considered during the three-week special session could flip a couple of seats to the Democrats.

The session’s outcome could also affect a leadership race between senators Joe Negron and Jack Latvala to succeed Andy Gardiner as Senate President after the 2016 election.

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