TALLAHASSEE – Senate Democratic Leader Chris Smith (D-Ft. Lauderdale) on Monday called for special elections to be held for voters in the newly drawn Congressional districts. He released the following statement regarding his decision to vote against legislation which preserves the unconstitutional status quo for the next two years:
“My decision to vote ‘no’ was based on the package deal with which we were presented, which protects these unconstitutional districts for the 2014 general election. I cannot support the notion that voters must choose candidates in unconstitutionally-drawn districts who will remain in office for the full term but no longer represent the people who elected them.
“I believe there must be a special election. Despite the assertions that there exists plenty of case law allowing elections to proceed in areas with invalidated maps, I am unpersuaded that the facts of those cases mirror this situation. In addition, the bulk of the cases used to bolster their argument are not even Florida cases.
“The 2012 redistricting began with a bad plan. Voting for this legislation ensures the mistakes will prevail for another two years. Holding a special election as quickly as possible is the only way to finally get it right for the voters.”