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Documents Released in Florida Redistricting Scandal


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Florida is one of three states where formerly convicted felons must petition before a clemency board to have their civil rights restored. Photo: Wikimedia Commons.

Florida is one of three states where formerly convicted felons must petition before a clemency board to have their civil rights restored. Photo: Wikimedia Commons.

Over the weekend The Naples Daily News got more than 500 pages of documents relating to Florida’s redistricting scandal.

State officials had originally planned to release the documents on December 1, but Florida Supreme Court decided to unseal the papers last month.

The documents – a long trail of emails between GOP consulting firm Data Targeting, and various state officials – show efforts to draw the state’s district maps in order to benefit the Republican Party. There are discussions explicitly referencing the need to obscure the firm’s input in the process and ironically one email points to the importance of speaking over the phone instead of via email.

Data Targeting made a last minute appeal to U.S. Supreme Court Justice Clarence Thomas asking that the documents remain sealed but Thomas chose not to act on it.

The next step in Florida’s redistricting case is the state supreme court. The voting rights groups that brought the original, successful challenge will argue the revised map made in last summer’s special Legislative session does not adequately address violations of Florida’s fair districts amendment.

Oral argument in the case is set for March 4 next year.


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