TALLAHASSEE (CBSMiami/AP) — A judge is set to take up the new Florida congressional districts at a trial.READ MORE: Attorney For Key Ally Of Venezuela Leader's Nicolas Maduro Called His Extradition To The US Illegal
Judge Terry Lewis agreed Friday to give attorneys involved in a three-year legal battle over Florida’s congressional districts until Monday to submit proposed maps.
The Florida Supreme Court in July ordered the Republican-controlled Legislature to redraw the state’s 27 congressional districts after finding the current map violated standards adopted by voters. But the House and Senate deadlocked over the issue during an August special session. The two sides have been unwilling to budge since.
The court last week ordered Lewis to hold a trial to determine which map should be adopted. It’s scheduled to start Sept. 24th.READ MORE: Haiti Gang With Past Abductions Blamed For Kidnapping Missionaries
Lewis may have as many as four different maps to consider.
Voters in 2010 approved the “Fair Districts” measures that mandate legislators cannot draw districts intended to help incumbents or a member of a political party. The Supreme Court in a stinging ruling said that eight districts were drawn to benefit the GOP and ordered the entire map be redrawn.
House and Senate staff and lawyers initially drew up a replacement map that if adopted could lead to the possible ouster of several incumbents in Congress, including U.S. Reps. Dan Webster and Gwen Graham. But GOP leaders in the two chambers sharply differed on changes proposed for central Florida and the Tampa Bay regions as House Republicans questioned whether the Senate proposal would be approved by the courts.
Attorneys for the House and Senate are expected to present their rival maps to Lewis. A coalition of groups, including the League of Women Voters of Florida, also plans to submit a map. That coalition has already criticized legislative proposals because it contends a SouthFlorida district has been drawn to benefit incumbent U.S. Rep. Carlos Curbelo.MORE NEWS: Miami Police Investigate Bomb Threat
(TM and © Copyright 2015 CBS Radio Inc. and its relevant subsidiaries. CBS RADIO and EYE Logo TM and Copyright 2015 CBS Broadcasting Inc. Used under license. All Rights Reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten, or redistributed. The Associated Press contributed to this report.)