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Senate takes Miguel Diaz de la Portilla map with South Florida changes

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The Florida Senate on Tuesday agreed to amend its proposed redrawn district map with a “sandbox” that again moves the lines in South Florida. The plan by GOP state Sen. Miguel Diaz de la Portilla also happens to ensure he wouldn’t have to run against fellow Republican Miami-Dade incumbent Anitere Flores. The Senate, however, put off a vote on the final map until Wednesday after a flurry of floor huddles, leading some to speculate that even that plan doesn’t yet have enough votes…

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Oscar Braynon files 5 more Senate maps

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The Florida Senate’s second-ranking Democrat has filed five more plans for consideration in the ongoing Special Session to redraw the state’s 40 senatorial districts. The chamber’s redistricting web page shows that state Sen. Oscar Braynon II of Miami Gardens filed the maps Sunday. Braynon, the Democratic leader pro tempore, also is vice chairman of the Reapportionment Committee. Its members voted 4-3 Friday, along party lines, to forward a map (S9090) to the floor favored by chair Bill Galvano, a Bradenton Republican. Procedurally, Braynon’s maps could be considered as amendments…

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Senate panel barely clears new redistricting map

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The Florida Senate’s panel on redistricting on Friday narrowly cleared a new map resetting the boundaries of the state’s 40 senatorial districts. The committee’s recommended map (S9090) next will be heard on the Senate floor Tuesday. It was approved on a 4-3 party-line vote. Committee chair Bill Galvano, a Bradenton Republican, said all senators will almost certainly be required to run again for their seats next year. “It’s probably a legal reality at this point,” he told reporters. As to the map’s chances…

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Florida Senate may require senators to be on 2016 ballot

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Amid a deepening rift that has split top Republicans, the Florida Senate may require voters in 2016 to pick senators for all forty of the state’s current Senate districts. The move may end a growing and contentious debate that has threatened to derail the 19-day special session that started this week. The GOP-controlled Florida Legislature returned to the Capitol this week to draw new Senate districts, but the dispute over elections was getting louder day by day. Some Senate Republican…

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Bill Galvano says Senate redistricting could be on floor by early next week

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The head of the Senate’s redistricting panel said he plans to file a bill for the Senate’s new district boundaries by late Wednesday and begin to discuss it by Friday. Despite seemingly little headway made during an hours-long meeting earlier Wednesday, state Sen. Bill Galvano said redistricting legislation could be on the floor of the Senate as early as Monday. The committee continued deliberations on six staff-drawn base maps and heard a presentation from state Sen. Jeff Clemens, a Lake…

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Tom Lee’s dissent grows over Senate redistricting effort

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State Sen. Tom Lee has emerged a lone voice of Republican dissent over the ongoing effort to redraw the Senate’s district map. Lee, a Brandon Republican and former Senate president, sits on the chamber’s redistricting panel that is meeting Wednesday. The morning part of the meeting was slowed down with technical and legal explanations. Essentially, however, Lee’s chief complaint was: We’re not doing it right. At one point, Lee gestured at a display of the six staff-drawn maps and asked, “Do these…

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Legislative chambers revise schedule for final week of Special Session

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The state House and Senate have issued legislative calendar changes for the final week of 2015 Special Session C, which is set to end November 6. The session was convened to amend Senate maps, per an adverse Florida Supreme Court judgment that found the upper chamber violated anti-gerrymandering laws. A number of scheduled hearing times were jointly amended Wednesday afternoon. A meeting of the Joint Legislative Auditing Committee — previously not scheduled to meet during Week 3 — will now meet…

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