A coalition of plaintiffs has asked a Tallahassee judge to redraw the state’s congressional maps and implement them for the 2014 midterm election. That request came from the plaintiffs, led by the League of Women Voters of Florida, who successfully challenged the state’s congressional maps in court. Leon Circuit Judge Terry Lewis ruled in July that two of the state’s 27 congressional districts were drawn to favor Republicans, which isn’t allowed under the fair district anti-gerrymandering provisions in the state constitution. As a result of the Tallahassee-area judge’s ruling, lawmakers held a five-day special session to redraw the congressional lines. Those redrawn maps are opposed by the plaintiffs, who formalized their concern in a 35-page objection filed Monday with the judge.
“Despite being given the opportunity to right the wrong they committed, … legislative defendants have squandered that opportunity by adopting a revised plan with minimal changes,” the objection states.
The plaintiffs are asking Lewis to redraw the maps and call special election dates for the affected seats so there is time to replace the maps that were found unconstitutional.
The coalition of plaintiffs takes issue with the new maps because they were drawn in closed meetings by state Rep. Richard Corcoran, of Trinity, and state Sen. Bill Galvano, of Bradenton, both Republicans, on the opening day of the special session. Each was picked by legislative leadership to head their respective chamber’s redistricting efforts.