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2015 redistricting

Legislature wants to be dropped from federal redistricting lawsuit

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The Republican-led Florida Legislature is asking a federal judge to dismiss the House and Senate from an ongoing lawsuit challenging the state’s congressional map. Lawyers for the House and Senate filed the request Tuesday. The state Supreme Court last month approved a new map for Florida’s 27 congressional districts that will result in changes to the state’s political landscape. A spokeswoman for Senate President Andy Gardiner said he does not see a reason for the Legislature to defend the court…

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Judge denies Senate motion to appoint new consultant in redistricting case

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A Tallahassee trial court judge Friday afternoon denied a motion filed by the Legislature’s attorneys that sought to appoint a special consultant. Second Judicial Circuit Judge George Reynolds sided with a coalition group of plaintiffs who brought the Senate redistricting challenge that ultimately invalidated the chamber’s enacted maps. Lewis said the time frame for the court’s work was too short to implement a new course of action. “The ship has sailed, and we are on the sea with this process,” said Lewis, denying…

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More Senate district maps filed Monday

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State Sens. Gwen Margolis and Miguel Diaz de la Portilla have filed their own versions of state Senate district maps, according to the chamber’s redistricting website. Margolis, a Miami Democrat, and Diaz de la Portilla, a Coral Gables Republican, submitted maps on Monday afternoon. Margolis filed one; Diaz de la Portilla turned in four. For details on those maps, click here. Those maps are intended to contend with the map favored by Senate Reapportionment Committee Chairman Bill Galvano, and another five…

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Two more maps filed for Senate redistricting

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Two more state Senate maps were submitted late Tuesday as part of the ongoing Special Session to redraw the districts, which the chamber previously admitted were gerrymandered to benefit Republicans. State Rep. Matt Caldwell, a North Fort Myers Republican, and state Sen. Jeff Clemens, a Lake Worth Democrat, each filed their own map. A cursory review shows that neither map contains districts that cross Tampa Bay. The six staff-drawn “base maps” now being considered by lawmakers all have districts that…

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Diane Roberts skewers ruling class during Tallahassee talk

in Apolitical/Top Headlines by

Writer, international scholar, FSU English professor, opinion columnist and environmentalist Diane Roberts entertained a crowd of North Florida Democrats Tuesday evening with her incisive wit and pointed observations about the state of Florida and its leaders. Referring to herself as “that professor conservatives warn you about,” Roberts let fly a quiverful of bon mots as she skewered the Legislature, “they argue like kindergartners”; Rick Scott, “Could you screw up any worse? Oh yeah, the governor”; and global warming deniers, “If…

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U.S. Rep. Corrine Brown legal challenge to new districts halted

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U.S. Rep. Corrine Brown‘s attempt to get a federal court to stop Florida lawmakers from redrawing her congressional district has been stopped for now. Lawyers on Monday withdrew the lawsuit that Brown was seeking to join. That means the Jacksonville Democrat will have to start over. Brown and other black leaders in central Florida last week filed to intervene in an already existing lawsuit that challenged the current shape of her district on the grounds that it created “racial packing”…

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As Mary Thomas readies CD 2 bid, Steve Southerland prays on returning

in 2017/Top Headlines by

Former U.S. Rep. Steve Southerland is considering another run in Florida’s Second Congressional District, according to two sources close to the former north Florida Congressman. Southerland represented north central Florida in the U.S. House from 2011 to 2015 before an upset defeat at the hands of U.S. Rep. Gwen Graham sent him packing. Florida Politics first reported in March that Southerland would not seek a rematch against Graham in 2016, however he is now seriously weighing a return to electoral politics because it appears likely that Florida’s congressional districts map…

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