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Gov. DeSantis vetoes congressional redistricting maps passed by Florida lawmakers

The governor says he plans to call a special legislative session to help "get it across the finish line."

TALLAHASSEE, Fla. — Gov. Ron DeSantis says he has vetoed the "defective" SB 102, which would establish reworked congressional districts in Florida based on population data from the 2020 Census. 

Earlier this month, DeSantis tweeted he would veto this piece of legislation, saying it was "DOA" — dead on arrival.

He said state lawmakers in trying to follow Florida law concerning redistricting "forgot about" the 14th Amendment of the U.S. Constitution. DeSantis has called a special legislative session to successfully get a redistricting map "across the finish line." 

Lawmakers will convene for the session at 12 p.m. on April 19 and will continue on the topic until no later than 11:59 p.m. on April 22.

“We have a responsibility to produce maps for our citizens that do not contain unconstitutional racial gerrymanders,” DeSantis said in a statement. “Today, I vetoed a map that violates the U.S. Constitution, but that does not absolve the Legislature from doing its job. I appreciate the Legislature’s willingness to work with me to pass a legally compliant map this Special Session.”

During the regular legislative session, DeSantis released his own proposal, which would have likely eliminated two Black plurality districts. However, that was not adopted by state lawmakers. 

The version passed by Florida lawmakers included a primary map and a secondary map. Neither met DeSantis' expectations. 

The only two things lawmakers were required to do this year during the legislative session were to approve a state budget and redraw political lines. 

Whatever map is eventually approved by DeSantis will include a new 28th congressional district, a result of Florida's population growing by 2.7 million new residents between 2010 and 2020.

The Associated Press contributed to this report. 

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