Another redistricting trial commences as sides spar over partisan intent of Senate maps
The weeklong redistricting trial scheduled to begin in a Tallahassee courtroom Monday will determine the fate of Florida’s 40 Senate districts and the future of the 29 incumbents seeking reelection.
The rare political scramble is forcing all of them back onto the ballot in November, including many of whom thought they could sit out this election because they were elected to a four-year term in 2014. And they each want to know: Who will have to move to get reelected, who faces new competition and who faces new communities to represent?
The remaining 11 senators are not seeking reelection because they are either leaving because of term limits, or seeking another office.
It is the vestige of the Fair Districts amendments to the state constitution that were approved by voters six years ago, and the districts remain in limbo because legislators admitted to manipulating the political boundaries three years ago to benefit Republicans — in violation of the amendments — then tried and failed to redraw the Senate map during a three-week special session.
Now, the job of preparing a new map is left to Circuit Court Judge George Reynolds, and he has only a week to do it. Both sides have submitted maps and each will accuse the other of drawing a map with improper partisan intent. Story here.