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The Florida Senate


After each decennial Census, the Legislature redraws the districts from which Florida voters elect their state representatives, state senators, and members of the U.S. House of Representatives. Redistricting is the redrawing of congressional and state legislative districts to adjust for uneven growth rates in different parts of the state. Districts determine which voters participate in which elections. Reapportionment is the redistribution of seats in the United States House of Representatives among the 50 states, based on the decennial census. Each state gets at least one seat. Effective with 2012 election, Florida has 27 representatives in the U.S. House of Representatives. Two U.S. Senators represent the entire state.

Legal Submissions

After enactment, state house and senate districts are reviewed by the Florida Supreme Court. Congressional districts are set by an act of the Legislature subject to the Governor's approval. All redistricting maps must be submitted to and precleared by a federal court or the United States Department of Justice.

On February 10, the Attorney General petitioned the Florida Supreme Court to determine the validity of house and senate districts enacted in Senate Joint Resolution 1176. The Court's March 9 opinion determined that the house plan was valid, but that 8 of 40 senate districts were not valid. After the legislature revised the senate plan during an extraordinary apportionment session, the Attorney General petitioned the Supreme Court to determine the validity of the revised senate districts in Senate Joint Resolution 2-B. The Court's April 27 opinion determined that the revised senate plan was valid. Apportionment case filings are posted on the Florida Supreme Court's website.

Congressional and state house redistricting plans were submitted to the United States Department of Justice for preclearance on March 13, and the revised state senate plan was submitted on March 30. The Department of Justice's April 30 letter stated no objection to the new maps.

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