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Courts / Law

A Florida appeals court reinstates DeSantis' congressional map

Audrey Gibson, D-Jacksonville, reviews proposed district maps
Phil Sears
/
AP
Sen. Audrey Gibson, D-Jacksonville, reviews proposed district maps during a Committee on Reapportionment meeting, Tuesday, April 19, 2022, at the Capitol in Tallahassee, Fla.

The decision comes a week after a lower court judge said the map was unconstitutional.

A state appeals court has reinstated a new congressional map drawn by Republican Gov. Ron DeSantis’ staff that could diminish Florida’s Black representation in Washington, a week after a lower court judge said the map was unconstitutional.

The 1st District Court of appeals ruled that Judge Layne Smith erred when he ordered a replacement map be used for the 2022 election.

The latest order means the governor’s map is reinstated pending outcome of the case in the appeals court.

The DeSantis map would likely boost the number of Florida seats held by Republicans, while also making it difficult for Democratic U.S. Rep. Al Lawson to maintain his seat in a north Florida district where nearly half the voters are Black.