By Eric Daugherty
April 14, 2022 Updated 7:54 A.M. ET
TALLAHASSEE (FCV) – Governor Ron DeSantis has chosen his desired redistricting map for the next 10 years after having called a Special Session of the Florida Legislature, which begins Thursday, April 14.
The map, as predicted by both Republicans and Democrats, nixes two districts that are drawn in favor of a minority black population to elect a Democrat in their respective districts – the old districts 5 and 10.
The map would give Donald Trump 20 supportive districts while giving President Joe Biden only 8, helping in increasing Republican representation in the federal government after the 2022 Election.
Democrats and media outlets are crying foul, arguing that the DeSantis map is targeting black representation in “largely black” districts, like MSNBC Executive Producer Kyle Griffin.
However, District 10, represented by Democrat Val Demings, is only 28% black, while District 5, represented by Democrat Al Lawson, is 47.3% black – neither eclipse the majority mark.
After the Republican-controlled legislature passed a ‘Plan A’ and ‘Plan B’ proposal for redistricting maps, DeSantis swiftly vowed to veto the map, saying, “DOA.” He delivered on that threat. Now, Republicans in the legislature have effectively deferred to DeSantis on redistricting.
DeSantis said that the maps sent to his desk “violates the U.S. Constitution.” Specifically, he said that S.B. 102 violated the Equal Protection Clause of the Fourteenth Amendment.
“Although I understand the Legislature’s desire to comply with the Florida Constitution, the Legislature is not absolved of its duty to comply with the U.S. Constitution,” he said.
The session plans to convene at 12:00 P.M. on Tuesday, April 19, and will go no later than 11:59 P.M. on Friday, April 22.
Supreme Court decision Bartlett V. Strickland ruled that states that claim to have so-called minority protected districts must contain a minority group that comprises more than 50% of the population. This is not the case in Florida.
Popular left-wing figure Marc E. Elias said on social media that “Florida will be sued” if the map is passed.
During the redistricting process during the regular Session, Florida State Representative (R) Jasonn Fischer told FCV that the maps “clearly violate the Constitution.”
Article III Section 20 (a) of the Florida Constitution says that districts cannot be drawn to favor or disfavor a party or incumbent, and that they may not deny or abridge the equal opportunity of racial minorities to elect a representative of their choice.
Critics of the vetoed maps say that drawing these districts with the explicit intent to concentrate black voters – who do not constitute a minority – into one district violates these rules and abridges the opportunity of other minorities to have their fair say in the democratic process.
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