A group of individual voters and community-based groups filed a lawsuit Friday challenging Florida’s new congressional district map.
The organizations Black Voters Matter, Equal Ground, the League of Women Voters of Florida, and Florida Rising, supported by the National Redistricting Foundation, joined with 12 individual plaintiffs in filing the lawsuit.
The complaint noted that Florida voters voted 12 years ago in favor of the “Fair Districts” amendment to the state constitution. This prohibits the legislature from diluting the opportunity of electing racial and language minorities to Congress, and it prohibits diminishing minority congressional districts.
The current legislature enacted a redistricting plan, but Republican governor Ron DeSantis vetoed that plan and convened a special legislative session that voted in his redistricting plan, SB 2-C.
The lawsuit alleged that the DeSantis plan “does not comply with the Fair Districts Amendment. It does not even purport to.” The plaintiffs state that the governor’s plan will cut the number of Black districts in half, from four to two, and will give the Republican party a disproportionate advantage in twenty out of twenty-eight districts.
Cecile Scoon, president of the League of Women Voters of Florida, said: “The League and the other plaintiffs have chosen to not stand by while a rogue governor and a complicit state Legislature make a mockery of Florida’s Constitution and try to silence the votes and voices of hundreds of thousands of Black voters.” The lawsuit seeks a declaration that DeSantis’ plan violates the Florida constitution and an injunction preventing any elections under the plan.