Chairman Tyler Sirois opened Friday’s hearing of the House Congressional Redistricting Subcommittee by urging members not to get distracted by “noise” that erupted “outside of our process” concerning the work at hand.
He was talking about the hubbub about Gov. Ron DeSantis proposing his own congressional redistricting plan that would eliminate at least one Black-held district. DeSantis’ move delayed the House plan’s progress while the Florida Supreme Court decided whether to get involved (it did not). No governor has intervened in this way in living memory.
But the noise Sirois was worried about was already in the room in the form of Robert Popper, a senior attorney at the conservative Judicial Watch, who said he’d been sent by DeSantis to warn members that they’d better get on board with the governor or else the U.S. Supreme Court would “torpedo” their plan.