Will Weatherford confirms special session on redistricting to convene Thursday

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The following letter was sent Sunday evening by House Speaker Will Weatherford:

“In response to the rulings issued by Judge Lewis on July 10, 2014 and August 1, 2014, the Florida Legislature has decided to produce a Congressional map to address the Court’s limited concerns.  Accordingly, the House and Senate have agreed to call ourselves into special session on Thursday, August 7 for the sole and exclusive purpose of reapportioning Florida’s Congressional Districts.

“We continue to maintain our strong objection to any attempt to disrupt the current election process. Florida’s Supervisors of Elections have raised serious concerns over changing the elections process at this late date. The NAACP also pointed out in their response to Judge Lewis that, “In a special election, get-out-the-vote infrastructure simply does not exist. Voters who face challenges to political participation – be it financial, job scheduling, transportation, or other impediments – will be irreparably harmed by conducting the election at a time where that infrastructure does not exist.”

“Tens of thousands of our service men and women overseas have received their ballots, and over one million absentee ballots have been mailed to Floridians. Members, we intend to vigorously defend the integrity and validity of Floridians’ votes that have already been and will be cast in the upcoming election.

“I understand that calling a special session at this late date will require you to rearrange your schedules. I have directed staff to provide you with detailed information tomorrow to assist you with your travel arrangements.”

Peter Schorsch is the President of Extensive Enterprises and is the publisher of some of Florida’s most influential new media websites, including SaintPetersBlog.com, FloridaPolitics.com, ContextFlorida.com, and Sunburn, the morning read of what’s hot in Florida politics. SaintPetersBlog has for three years running been ranked by the Washington Post as the best state-based blog in Florida. In addition to his publishing efforts, Peter is a political consultant to several of the state’s largest governmental affairs and public relations firms. Peter lives in St. Petersburg with his wife, Michelle, and their daughter, Ella.