Judge Rules Florida Illegally Redrew Districts To Benefit GOP

A circuit court judge ruled late Thursday that the Florida legislature illegally redrew the state’s congressional districts in 2012 to benefit Republicans.

Circuit Judge Terry Lewis slammed political operatives in his ruling, saying they “made a mockery of the Legislature’s transparent and open process of redistricting” while “going to great lengths to conceal from the public their paln [sic] and their participation in it,” as quoted by the Tampa Bay Times. While the judge concluded that GOP operatives “did in fact conspire to manipulate and influence the redistricting process,” he did not determine that legislative leaders were in on the scheme.

Lewis ordered that the state’s 5th and 10th congressional districts, represented by Reps. Corrine Brown (D) and Daniel Webster (R), respectively, be redrawn, according to the newspaper. Neighboring districts would also be affected by those changes.

The lawsuit was brought by a coalition of groups including the League of Women Voters that accused Republicans of manipulating Florida’s political map to favor the GOP, according to the New York Times.

A spokeswoman for the Republican Party of Florida told the New York Times that party officials weren’t yet prepared to comment. The state was expected to appeal the ruling, though, so the decision is unlikely to affect this year’s elections.

This post has been updated.

Dear Reader,

When we asked recently what makes TPM different from other outlets, readers cited factors like honesty, curiosity, transparency, and our vibrant community. They also pointed to our ability to report on important stories and trends long before they are picked up by mainstream outlets; our ability to contextualize information within the arc of history; and our focus on the real-world consequences of the news.

Our unique approach to reporting and presenting the news, however, wouldn’t be possible without our readers’ support. That’s not just marketing speak, it’s true: our work would literally not be possible without readers deciding to become members. Not only does member support account for more than 80% of TPM’s revenue, our members have helped us build an engaged and informed community. Many of our best stories were born from reader tips and valuable member feedback.

We do what other news outlets can’t or won’t do because our members’ support gives us real independence.

If you enjoy reading TPM and value what we do, become a member today.

TPM Staff
Latest Livewire
Masthead Masthead
Founder & Editor-in-Chief:
Executive Editor:
Managing Editor:
Associate Editor:
Investigations Desk:
Director of Audience:
Editor at Large:
General Counsel:
Head of Product:
Director of Technology:
Associate Publisher:
Front End Developer:
Senior Designer: