TALLAHASSEE, Fla. (AP) - The Supreme Court ruled that lawmakers can be forced to testify as part of a lawsuit challenging whether they violated the constitution when they drew new congressional districts.
The decision Friday is a victory for the League of Women Voters and others who are suing over the new political boundaries approved in 2012. They argue that the Republican controlled Legislature didn't follow a constitutional amendment that says it can't draw districts intended to protect incumbents or members of a certain political party.
The groups are hoping lawmakers can be questioned about the process. Lawyers representing the House and Senate had argued such a move would violate a long-standing privilege that shields legislators from testifying in lawsuits.
The court agreed that privilege exists, but not when the constitution directs their behavior.