After Years Of Redistricting Challenges, Lawmaker Wants Clarity

Feb 7, 2017

A Republican lawmaker is trying to speed up legal challenges against the state’s redistricting process. The measure comes after a marathon of contentious court cases.

Florida's newly redrawn congressional districts.
Credit https://www.flsenate.gov/Session/Redistricting/MapStats

In 2012, Florida lawmakers redrew district lines to unfairly favor Republican candidates, spurring a flurry of legal challenges. The maps bounced between the courts for years, leaving candidates and the public unsure of where the district lines fell. Senator Travis Hutson of Palm Coast wants to clear up that confusion and expedite the legal process. But some opponents argue the bill could interfere with the autonomy of the court system. Peter Butzin represents the League of Women Voters.

“At larger issue is, if passed, this bill may serve as an endorsement of future legislative overreach into what is supposed to be an independent judiciary,” Butzin said.

Some Florida lawmakers are taking a stance against the courts, which they see as upsetting the balance of powers. The measure passed its first committee stop Tuesday, but still lacks a House companion bill.