U.S. Justice Department approves Florida's maps
State officials on April 30 cleared the final two hurdles needed to put their new redistricting maps into effect, setting the stage for candidates to qualify for office using the state's new political boundaries. Read more here
Analysis of the approved maps
These maps drawn by the staff of the Senate and House show how the Republican-led Legislature tackled new requirements imposed by voters who approved constitutional Amendments 5 and 6 in 2010.
Florida State Senate
About our analysis
Lawmakers legally may use political data such as election results or voter registration when drawing the new voting boundaries, but the Senate chose not to include it when drawing its maps as a response to new constitutional requirements that ban legislators from protecting incumbents. The House used political data to draw its maps. That kind of public data helps show how those districts will perform in future elections, so the Times uses it for our analysis, as well.
From the Florida House's redistricting site, MyDistrictBuilder, we downloaded 2008 and 2010 general election results and 2010 voter registration figures. As lawmakers release and revise the maps, we will sort that data by each new district.
In many cases, minority voter registration numbers are lower than the number of minorities in a district who are old enough to vote. But lawmakers, and courts, can only consider the latter category.
For political data, we focused on the 2008 presidential race and the 2010 governor election. If a Democrat won a proposed new district in both years, it is colored blue. If a Republican won both races that district turns red. Green-colored districts switched parties. We also show the margin of victory in each potential district.
Questions about our analysis? Contact Times News Artist Darla Cameron.
About the redistricting process
Florida's Constitution requires the Legislature to convene in the "second year following the decennial census" to reapportion the state in the Senate and House districts and congressional districts. The task seems simple enough: To logically divide the state's
18.8 million residents into 120 House districts, 40 Senate districts and 27 congressional districts. But the process is often fraught with controversy, and almost certain to spawn legal challenges. The Legislature's deadline to draw the new maps is March 9, 2012. But the political fight could drag on for most of the summer.
What districts do you live in currently?
Use MyLawmaker to find your current home district. Enter your Florida address into the box below.
Redistricting public hearings
Public officials held a series of town-hall style meetings across the state to hear from residents about the redistricting process during the summer of 2011.
Other redistricting resources
- Florida House of Representatives websites where you can draw your own districts.
- Florida Senate redistricting site also has a draw-your-own districts tool.
- 2002 redistricting: How were the current districts drawn? Visit this archived site to find out.
State redistricting committees
- Florida House of Representatives Redistricting Committee
- Florida House of Representatives Congressional Redistricting Subcommittee
- Florida House of Representatives House Redistricting Subcommittee
- Florida House of Representatives Senate Redistricting Subcommittee
- Florida Senate Committee on Reapportionment
More politics coverage
- PolitiFact.com: Sorting out the truth in national politics.
- PolitiFact Florida: Fact-finding in Sunshine State politics.
- Florida politics: Recent coverage from the St. Petersburg Times and tampabay.com.
- The Buzz: Political blog of the St. Petersburg Times.
- Naked Politics: Political blog of the Miami Herald.
- Bay Buzz: Local politics from Pinellas, Hillsborough, Pasco and Hernando counties.