Constitutional Amendment No. 5 and No. 6: Collins Center for Policy Policy

AT A GLANCE: AMENDMENT 5

Sponsor/Originator: FairDistrictsFlorida.org

Title on Ballot: Standards for Legislature to follow in

legislative redistricting

Official Summary: Legislative districts or districting

plans may not be drawn to favor or disfavor an

incumbent or political party. Districts shall not be

drawn to deny racial or language minorities the equal

opportunity to participate in the political process and

elect representatives of their choice. Districts must be

contiguous. Unless otherwise required, districts must

be compact, as equal in population as feasible, and

where feasible must make use of existing city, county

and geographical boundaries.

What it would do: Amendment 5 would require that

legislative districts not be drawn to favor one political

party over another or deny minorities equal opportunity

to participate in the political process.

Arguments for: Incumbents, both Democrat and

Republican, have traditionally drawn district boundaries

to give themselves political advantage. Redistricting

should not favor any incumbent or party.

Arguments against: The amendment might reduce

minority representation. Abiding by the amendment

would be difficult, and redistricting under its strictures

could lead to a flurry of lawsuits.

AT A GLANCE: AMENDMENT 6

Sponsor/Originator: FairDistrictsFlorida.org

Title on Ballot: Standards for Legislature to follow in

congressional redistricting

Official Summary: Congressional districts or

districting plans may not be drawn to favor or disfavor

an incumbent or political party. Districts shall not be

drawn to deny racial or language minorities the equal

opportunity to participate in the political process and

elect representatives of their choice. Districts must be

contiguous. Unless otherwise required, districts must

be compact, as equal in population as feasible, and

where feasible must make use of existing city, county

and geographical boundaries.

What it would do: Amendment 6 would require that

congressional districts not be drawn to favor one

political party over another or deny minorities equal

opportunity to participate in the political process.

Arguments for: Incumbents, both Democrat and

Republican, have traditionally drawn district boundaries

to give themselves political advantage. Redistricting

should not favor any incumbent or party.

Arguments against: The amendment might reduce

minority representation. Abiding by the amendment

would be difficult, and redistricting under its strictures

could lead to a flurry of lawsuits.


About Stephen E. McGaughey
International consultant in economic development programs and projects

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