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Florida Supreme Court Denies DeSantis’ Request for Redistricting

TALLAHASSEE (AP)

The Florida Supreme Court told Republican Governor Ron DeSantis on Thursday it would not answer his questions about whether the black congressional district was unconstitutional, saying it was too complicated to answer. simply in consultation.

DeSantis personally intervened in the decade-long process of drawing new congressional maps, which is highly unusual for a governor. The House and Senate have reviewed maps that have largely left the Democratic congressional district intact, but DeSantis is pushing for a map that would make his district Republican.

After submitting his map, DeSantis asked the Supreme Court whether Lawson’s county was unconstitutional. The county runs from Jacksonville to Gadsden County in western Tallahassee, a distance of about 200 miles (about 321 km). DeSantis questioned whether drawing it to accommodate widely spaced Black communities would meet state and federal constitutions.

“The scope of the Governor’s request was broad and contained many questions regarding complex federal and state constitutional issues and the precedents explaining the Voting Rights Act of 1965,” it read.

The governor’s office graciously accepted the comments.

“While we hope the Supreme Court will provide clarity to the legal questions surrounding the maps under consideration, we agree with the Court’s opinion that there are issues important to be resolved quickly,” DeSantis spokeswoman Taryn Fenske said in an email.

The map that DeSantis released the day before Martin Luther King Day will also dilute the black vote in a South Florida county hosted by Democratic Representative Sheila Cherfilus-McCormick. The current county in Palm Beach and Broward counties is about 50% African-American, but the DeSantis map extends it to Florida’s southwestern Gulf coast, which tends to vote Republican.

Lawson said in a phone interview that the ruling gives the Legislature more confidence to map Congress as it sees fit rather than bowing to pressure from the governor. He served in the state Legislature for 28 years before being elected to Congress and said he had never seen a governor submit maps to lawmakers instead of letting them do their job. .

“Ron DeSantis lost today, but more importantly, the constitution won,” Lawson said.

Lawson said DeSantis’ decision to release his map before the MLK holiday and ask the Supreme Court for the constitutionality of his area on the first day of Black History Month was tactless.

“He pushed his limits,” Lawson said. “I hope that he regroups and realizes he was wrong and in the last two and a half weeks of this Black History Month, he lets African Americans know that he appreciates the contribution. their about what they did in the state of Florida. ”

Democratic Representative Kelly Skidmore, who is on the House redistricting committee, said she was pleased the court recognized the separation of powers in branches of government.

“It’s time to put aside this political distraction and get back to work. Floridians expect us to create fair maps that uphold the Florida and US constitutions, and that is exactly what we intend to do,” she said in an emailed statement.

The Senate passed a congressional map that kept Lawson’s area intact. The House of Representatives has postponed consideration of their proposed map until a Supreme Court ruling, but Speaker Chris Sprowls said they will continue with Lawson County’s conservation map.

Sprowls said: “We are not paused. “I think you could predict that the northern Florida county featured on the previous House map would be the same or the same.”

The discrepancy between the House and Senate maps will have to be resolved and DeSantis has the option to veto anything sent to him. Candidates for the National Assembly need to be eligible to vote between June 13 and 17. The legislative session is scheduled to end on March 11.

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https://www.winknews.com/2022/02/11/florida-supreme-court-refuses-desantis-request-on-redistricting/ Florida Supreme Court Denies DeSantis’ Request for Redistricting

Tom Vazquez

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