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On Wednesday, a state judge struck down new congressional districts in north Florida, saying that Governor Ron DeSantis, who drew the lines, made it harder for Black voters to elect their own candidate.
“I am finding the enacted map is unconstitutional because it diminishes African Americans’ ability to elect candidates of their choice,” circuit judge Layne Smith said on Wednesday, according to the Tributary.
Lawyers for the state of Florida are expected to appeal the ruling immediately, and the Florida supreme court will likely decide the case, per The Guardian.
DeSantis’ map was racialized from the beginning.
The decision dealt specifically with DeSantis’s plans to dismantle Florida’s fifth congressional district, which stretched from Jacksonville to Tallahassee. The district remains 46% Black, and is currently represented by Al Lawson, a Black Democrat. DeSantis’s new district chopped the district up into four districts where Republican candidates would be favored to win.
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