Florida Lawmakers To Meet On Redrawing Congressional Districts

Source: AP / CBS News

TALLAHASSEE, Fla.– Confronted with a judge’s ruling to swiftly redraw the state’s congressional districts, Florida’s House speaker disclosed extraordinary plans late Sunday to convene a rare summer special session to devise a new map.

The speaker, Will Weatherford, sent out an email to legislators advising that they will hold a special session starting Thursday to address the “limited concerns” raised by a Florida judge over the state’s current congressional boundaries. The special session is expected to last up to a week.

The decision to hold a special session was triggered by a ruling by a circuit court judge, Terry Lewis. Lewis, who had ruled in early July that the current congressional map was illegal, ordered legislators on Friday to draw up a new map by Aug. 15.

Voters in 2010 passed a so-called “Fair Districts” amendment that says legislators cannot draw up districts to favor incumbents or a political party. A coalition of groups, including the League of Women Voters, has contended that the Republican consultants used a “shadow” process to draw districts that benefited Republicans.

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