DeSantis Takes Control Of Redistricting, Explained

Background: Florida’s legislative branch gave Governor Ron DeSantis the power to draft Florida’s new congressional districts for upcoming elections. With this, DeSantis can gerrymander the districts of Florida in his favor. Opponents are claiming that this is unconstitutional.

Florida’s Supreme Court: Opponents will likely file lawsuits, but any challenge would appear before the state’s Supreme Court. Because of  DeSantis's recent appointments, the court now leans heavily right and could decide in his favor.

DeSantis’s goal: Florida’s fifth congressional district, now held by a black Democrat, was created to guarantee the election of a black candidate. DeSantis believes it’s unconstitutional and wants it replaced with two new districts with race-neutral congressional districts.

"We are not going to have a 200-mile gerrymander that divvies up people based on the color of their skin. That is wrong. That is not the way we've governed in the state of Florida, and so that will obviously — that will be litigated,” DeSantis said.

He also wants another district replaced, also currently held by a black Democrat. Opponents are calling him racist for the redistricting.

Big picture: Republicans are up 16-11 with the current congressional map. DeSantis’s changes would give Republicans a 20-8 advantage. The Florida governor is using his power to help Republicans retake Congress.