Democrats offer competing takes on how to handle redistricting Special Session

Democrat Donkey Under American Flag
Annette Taddeo wants a boycott, but others like Shevrin Jones want their objections heard.

Should Democrats show up to a Special Session on redistricting? One state Senator running for Governor has already said she won’t go. But most Democrats, including her Primary opposition, see value in using the floor as a platform against gerrymandering.

Sen. Annette Taddeo, a Miami Democrat, said on Wednesday that lawmakers shouldn’t even show up if Republican leadership plans to rubber-stamp a proposed map from Gov. Ron DeSantis.

“It’s all a farce,” Taddeo told Florida Politics. “It’s a waste of time, of taxpayer dollars, when we should be dealing with real issues that Floridians are facing.”

Taddeo is challenging DeSantis for Governor and currently is in a Democratic Primary battle.

Taddeo hopes for a Special Session soon on property insurance. She also said she’s flabbergasted a Surfside condo collapse that killed 98 people wasn’t enough to move a building inspection reform bill across the finish line during the regular Legislative Session.

But she won’t go to Tallahassee after the Governor vetoed a map approved by the Legislature and proposed his own.

“We’re not even drawing maps, which constitutionally we are supposed to do,” Taddeo said. “They have said we are not going to do anything. We’re just going there to go through the motions and give the Governor whatever he wants.”

She thinks her time will be better spent doing something for her community. She encouraged colleagues to boycott and instead participate in a Habitat for Humanity project or similar bit of local good.

“Just do something real and that shows that this is what we’d rather be doing in Tallahassee,” she said, “actually fixing problems (Floridians) are dealing with, like affordable housing.”

Colleagues so far haven’t jumped on the boycott wagon.

“It is important that Democrats show up and be on record rejecting this unprecedented power grab that the Governor is on,” said Sen. Shevrin Jones, a Miami Gardens Democrat.

Other candidates for Governor also offered competing takes.

“It’s important that our legislators are on the record regarding Gov. DeSantis’ abuse of power,” said U.S. Rep. Charlie Crist, a Democratic candidate for Governor. “What he’s trying to do is illegal and we need to build the legislative record because all of this will be decided ultimately by the courts. There’s a lot at stake here both locally and nationally.”

Agriculture Commissioner Nikki Fried, also a Democratic candidate for Governor, agreed with criticisms of the Legislature for deferring to DeSantis on cartography.

“They have given absolute power to this Governor to draw maps for our congressional districts,” she said. “That responsibility is supposed to be with the Legislature.”

But she wasn’t sure about a boycott.

“I am not in the Legislature so that’s not my decision, my choice or even my advice on what the Democratic caucus should be doing. But it is irresponsible of this Legislature to have given so much power to the Governor knowing that he has abused it time and time again.”

Jacob Ogles

Jacob Ogles has covered politics in Florida since 2000 for regional outlets including SRQ Magazine in Sarasota, The News-Press in Fort Myers and The Daily Commercial in Leesburg. His work has appeared nationally in The Advocate, Wired and other publications. Events like SRQ’s Where The Votes Are workshops made Ogles one of Southwest Florida’s most respected political analysts, and outlets like WWSB ABC 7 and WSRQ Sarasota have featured his insights. He can be reached at [email protected]


  • martin

    April 14, 2022 at 3:10 pm

    Trump and DeSantis are both willing to confront Democrats and Rino Republicants HEAD ON! They’re the top America First patriots… by far. But DeSantis doesn’t have Trump’s drawing power. Americans love Trump’s America First concept of government that represents the public, not elites.

    The dems can go “tweet” all about it!

    • jay

      April 14, 2022 at 7:30 pm

      America love trump that Biden beat him by more than 8 millions votes. You love Trump. Not us.

  • Andy

    April 15, 2022 at 6:36 am

    DeSantis and trump have done nothing to help working class people. Trump tax cut helped the wealthy and big corps and DeSantis gave 600$ million plus tax break to big business. Republican have no policies to address health care, retirement better wages , environmental issues, clean water . This is not a liberal position. Everyone should work and earn a living and not live off the government. Culture war like policies don’t put food on the table and roof over Americans heads!!

    • Tom

      April 15, 2022 at 8:51 am

      You Andy are obviously ignorant and clueless. DeSantis is America’s Gov.

      He’s done more and meant more for blue collar and middle class. On every issue and metric he’s made a difference. DeSantis for all. Rising tide lifts all boars.

      Schools open for education, 3x raises bonuses, school scholarships expanded for poor, minorities who elected him and will re elect him. First responders and law enforcement raises and bonuses. Protecting and defending young school children, helping working mom and dads everyday, school kids, protecting unborn. Seniors inoculated number one in USA. Blue state tyrannical Govs would have destroyed Florida, like northeast, midwest.

      Florida is the beacon of freedom, liberty and families. DeSantis is America’s Gov and future. As Dean Worner says, drunk, dumb and stupid is no way to go through life, in this case Andy. DeSantis wins bigly!

      • RonDeSantis sucks

        April 15, 2022 at 9:30 pm

        Lol what? Florida is a nightmare of a state being lead by a despot.

        • Tom

          April 16, 2022 at 8:58 am

          And when are you leaving?

          • Nack

            April 17, 2022 at 7:01 pm

            “When are you leaving?”

            Your all gonna be poor blue collar hillynilly trash no matter what

    • tom

      April 16, 2022 at 9:00 am

      OK. I’ll play.

      What is a “fair” amount for the rich to pay in taxes?

      • Ocean Joe

        April 16, 2022 at 10:14 am

        Andy is correct, and Tom, as usual, cheerleading for Desantis, you have glossed over reality. Some giant corporations pay no taxes at all. Research and development, depreciation, etc. As Romney said, per a conservative supreme court, ‘corporations are people, too, my friend.’ Why shouldn’t they have ‘skin in the game’ as Ricky wants for the poor?

        Second, and tragically, Republicans have trashed our environment in favor of developers. No debate. The manatees are starving. The water is too dirty to support seagrass. How did we get here? Was luring a 1000 new residents a day worth it?

  • Tom

    April 16, 2022 at 8:57 am

    “They have given absolute power to this Governor to draw maps for our congressional districts,” she said. “That responsibility is supposed to be with the Legislature.”

    But yet, if you don’t like the maps, you are going to cry to the courts to change them . . .

    The legislature is also supposed to be in charge of election law, but that didn’t happen in WI, GA, PA, AZ and a host of other states in 2020. Don’t hear democrats crying about that!

    • Ocean Joe

      April 16, 2022 at 11:37 am

      If we’re blessed with 3 branches of government by the creators of our constitution, in hopes then of balanced government where no tyrant like the British king could ever rule, then why, of late, do Republicans, when they control the legislative branch, always surrender their powers over to the executive if he is also Republican. It’s one thing to be on the same page, quite another to abdicate the responsibilities granted to our state senators and representatives by their constituents.
      And the courts. Folks will go running to the courts! That’s what they’re there for. When you get your dictatorship, you won’t have to worry about courts doing anything more than rubber stamping what Herr Donald decrees. In FDR’s time, Democrats probably indulged in the same subservience, but that doesnt make it right. Don’t give up on democracy Tom.
      And on this fine Easter’s eve, maybe your party leaders could lighten up a bit on hating our neighbors to the south, or the hating in general. We can do a lot more together.

Comments are closed.


Florida Politics is a statewide, new media platform covering campaigns, elections, government, policy, and lobbying in Florida. This platform and all of its content are owned by Extensive Enterprises Media.

Publisher: Peter Schorsch @PeterSchorschFL

Contributors & reporters: Phil Ammann, Roseanne Dunkelberger, A.G. Gancarski, Anne Geggis, Kelly Hayes, Ryan Nicol, Jacob Ogles, Gray Rohrer, Jesse Scheckner, Christine Sexton, Andrew Wilson, Wes Wolfe, and Mike Wright.

Email: [email protected]
Twitter: @PeterSchorschFL
Phone: (727) 642-3162
Address: 204 37th Avenue North #182
St. Petersburg, Florida 33704

Sign up for Sunburn