Florida's governor and GOP Presidential contender Ron DeSantis insisted that forcing black-majority districts would amount to an unconstitutional racial gerrymander. He vetoed the Florida Legislature's original congressional district map and forced lawmakers to accept his own map, wiping out the North Florida district as Black-performing.
The DeSantis administration and State Legislature filed suit in State court last month to rule that Florida’s Fair District amendments to the state Constitution, modeled on the federal Voting Rights Act, making nondiminishment of these districts a top priority when redrawing the electoral map every 10 years, is unconstitutional.
However, DeSantis' hopes to end Black Majority districts in his state seems a futile gesture now after the United States Supreme Court recently rejected Alabama's same type of effort.
The Justices refused to strike down the language in the Voting Rights Act specifically prohibiting new maps from diminishing minorities’ chances of electing candidates of their choice. The language DeSantis is targeting in his State's constitution.
The order from the Supreme Court means that the redistricting process in Alabama will go forward with court-appointed experts preparing new maps that include two majority-Black district for Alabama's minority Black residents.
It is highly probable that we will see the same order for Florida if the Republican controlled State Court sides with DeSantis and this case also ends up in front of the Supreme Court.
About the writer: Matthew Woodruff is an Independent Journalist and Author who believes in Freely Accessible, Honest and Open Reporting.
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