The Republican-led Florida Senate shot back Friday on the three-barrel attack by the NAACP, a coalition of voters group and the Florida Democratic Party with a 106-page brief that attempts to counter claims that the Florida Supreme Court should reject the second Senate redistricting plan and rewrite it themselves.
The court is scheduled to hear the case a week from today and it will then have 30 days to decide to accept or reject the maps or 60 days to write them itself. As a bit of a reminder of the ticking time limits between now the candidate qualifying, which will take place June 4-8, in time for the Aug. 14 primary, Secretary of State Ken Detzner filed a memo to the court that outlined the election year deadlines.
The Senate argues that the alternative map offered by the Democrats “engineers Democratic districts” because it achieves a 20-20 partisan balance and diminished the ability of Hispanics in South Florida to elect candidates of their choice.
The Democrats had argued, in its brief filed April 10, that despite the court’s March 9 ruling that provided a road map for fixing the Senate’s first flawed map, the new version “is still replete with evidence of an intent to favor incumbents and the dominant political party.’’