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Judge Ponders New Florida Congressional Map



TALLAHASSEE (by Rick Flagg and Alan McBride/FLA. NEWS NETWORK) -- A circuit judge in Tallahassee is trying to figure out if the new congressional map approved by the legislature is kosher.
 
Legislative lawyer George Meros says Congressional District 5 may look a bit unusual, but it was drawn that way to give black voters a say.
 
"CD (Congressional District) 5 was generated to remedy rampant racial discrimination in voting in northeast Florida," he said. "That discrimination has not stopped."
 
But David King, with the League of Women Voters. says District 5 was drawn to take blacks out of the adjoining districts so they would be more likely to elect Republicans.
 
"They attempt to say that they have to have it this way because they have to protect the minority rights," he said. "What they're really protecting is their Republican interests."
 
Judge Lewis has already decided the old map is no good because it was gerrymandered to help the GOP.
 
Attorneys for groups such as the League of Women voters claim the new map is still heavily gerrymandered, while attorneys for the legislature contend that they followed the judge's instructions when they drew it up.
 
Judge Lewis has to decide now if the re-write passes muster.
 
He told the lawyers Wednesday that he'll do his best to make a decision as soon as possible.
 

 
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