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Appeals court throws out Brown and Diaz-Balart redistricting lawsuit

In a blow to two incumbent congressmen -- and the Florida House which has spent taxpayer money siding with them -- a federal appeals court on Tuesday rejected a challenge to Florida's Amendment 6, added to the state constitution by voters to curb so-called gerrymandering of congressional districts.

From the Associated Press: The three-judge panel of the 11th U.S. Circuit Court of Appeals rebuffed claims by U.S. Reps. Mario Diaz-Balart, a Miami Republican, and Corrine Brown, a Jacksonville Democrat, that the power to change congressional redistricting rules resides solely with the Legislature and not the voters through a referendum.

"The lawmaking power in Florida expressly includes the power of the people to amend their constitution, and that is exactly what the people did here in passing Amendment 6," wrote U.S. Circuit Judge Stanley Marcus in the 32-page opinion, which affirmed a September ruling by a Miami federal judge. Full story here.

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