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FL House OKs Congressional Map Despite Criticism

U.S. House of Representatives
U.S. Rep. Corrine Brown

The Florida House is moving ahead with changes to the state's 27 congressional districts, despite criticism it would disenfranchise black voters.

A House panel on Thursday approved a new map that would make several significant changes, including shifting the district now held by U.S. Rep. Corrine Brown.

Brown is suing to stop the Legislature. But she testified before lawmakers and told them their proposal would dilute the voting strength of blacks. Brown suggested that Florida has been able to avoid racial strife that hit other cities because blacks living in the state have representation in Congress.

The House panel approved a map that would move Brown's district from one that runs from Jacksonville to Orlando to a district that stretches westward to Tallahassee.

Legislators are holding a special session because the state Supreme Court ruled that the Legislature violated the state constitution while drawing up the current districts.

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