A key state senator floated a last-ditch effort Thursday to strike a compromise with the House on new congressional districts, while voting-rights groups that challenged the current congressional map called for the Florida Supreme Court to take over the process.
A special legislative session to redraw congressional districts collapsed Friday as the House and Senate could not reach agreement on a map.
Senate leaders crafting new districts for the chamber in 2012 held confidential meetings to discuss maps with lawmakers before the maps were made public, while at the same time boasting about “the most open and transparent redistricting process in Florida’s history,” according to court documents.
The Florida Senate has approved a congressional redistricting plan but will need to work out differences with the House before ending a special legislative session.
The Florida House is moving ahead with a substantial overhaul of the state’s 27 congressional districts even though U.S. Rep. Corrine Brown criticized the move, stating it would disenfranchise black voters.
Members of Congress along with some Florida lawmakers blasted the first draft of a new set of Florida congressional districts.
Senators scolded the Florida Supreme Court for trampling on their First Amendment rights as lawmakers began a special session Monday aimed at redrawing congressional districts the court said were gerrymandered to help the Republican Party.
As a Leon County judge finalized the dates for a hearing on a third draft of Florida’s congressional districts, a key lawmaker Monday refused to rule out the possibility of continuing the legal fight over the map, this time in federal court.
With a high-stakes gambling deal with the Seminole Tribe set to expire in July, lawmakers may not have to hold a special session to keep it from falling apart, according to a prominent senator who was instrumental in crafting the agreement, called a compact, five years ago.
The appointment of a Florida health official in Governor Rick Scott’s administration is in limbo.