TALLAHASSEE, Fla. – New political maps for the Florida House and Senate were approved by the state Supreme Court on Thursday.
But Democratic House Leader Evan Jenne said the once-a-decade process to redraw lines might not be over. Jenne said there still could be a lawsuit challenging the maps, which House Democrats opposed.
“It's premature victory for them," Jenne said in a phone interview. “There's still a long process to go. We don't know if anybody's going to sue or not. So, it's all up in the air."
While Jenne said he has not heard of any Democratic House members planning to challenge the maps in courts, he said, “Anyone can.”
The Senate unanimously passed the redrawn maps for the 40 Senate districts and 120 House districts a month ago. While Supreme Court approval is needed, unlike congressional redistricting, the governor does not have a say in legislative maps.
And traditionally, the Senate does not question the House maps, and vice versa.
Legislative and congressional maps are redrawn after the federal census to adjust to changes in population. The Senate has already passed a bill creating a new congressional map, including a new 28th district. The House will vote on its congressional maps Friday. The House bill contains two maps, including a secondary map in case the primary map is found to be unconstitutional.
The two chambers will than have to negotiate to come to an agreement by March 11 if they want to avoid extending their 60-day session or calling a special session.