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NEWS via Governing: Florida Lawmakers to Redraw Congressional Maps but on Their Own Terms

August 6, 2014 // 0 Comments

Florida Lawmakers to Redraw Congressional Maps but on Their Own Terms BY MCCLATCHY NEWS | AUGUST 5, 2014 By Mary Ellen Klas Florida legislators indicated Monday that they will meet in special session this week to make the court-ordered repairs to two congressional districts in North and Central Florida but they will not accept holding special elections this year to put them in place. In a joint email to legislators, House Speaker Will Weatherford and Senate President Don Gaetz said they “continue to maintain our strong objection to any attempt to disrupt the current election process.” But they also laid out the schedule for the special session they are convening on Thursday in response to an Aug. 15 deadline imposed on them by Leon County Circuit Judge Terry Lewis. Lewis ordered lawmakers to revise their congressional redistricting map to fix two districts he had previously ruled unconstitutional, those held by U.S. Reps. Corrine Brown, D-Jacksonville and Dan Webster, [...]

NEWS via Mashable: Mapmakers Debate How to Define Crimea

March 21, 2014 // 0 Comments

Mapmakers Debate How to Define Crimea A cartographer at work, circa 1930.IMAGE: VINTAGE IMAGES/HULTON ARCHIVE/GETTY IMAGES BY COLIN DAILEDA1 DAY AGO Much of the world is watching how the high-stakes tug-of-war over Crimea will play out, but few groups of professionals are more invested than cartographers. Cartographers are tasked with mapping the political dimensions of the globe. That means when a piece of land switches ownership between countries, it’s their job to decide whether they want to make that change official. The latest debate for this small but influential club is centered on Crimea, the once-autonomous region of Ukraine that voted on March 16 to become a part of Russia. Russian President Vladimir Putin has signed a treaty to annex the peninsula, and it now must be approved by the Russian parliament. On Wednesday, the Ukrainian governmentannounced it was pulling out its troops. But Western nations including the United States, the U.K., and Germany, have not [...]

NEWS via CNN: Crimea-Economic fallout of a ‘yes’ vote

March 16, 2014 // 0 Comments

Crimea: Economic fallout of a ‘yes’ vote By Alanna Petroff and Mark Thompson  @CNNMoney March 15, 2014: 7:54 AM ET Crimea is voting on Sunday in a referendum to decide if the region should break from Ukraine and join Russia.  LONDON (CNNMoney) The Ukrainian region of Crimea votes Sunday on whether to join Russia, a move that could tip Europe back into a Cold War with its powerful eastern neighbor. The West has called the vote illegal, saying Russian military activity in Crimea violates Ukraine’s sovereignty and will influence the outcome of the referendum. U.S. and European leaders say Russia will pay a price for annexing Crimea, and German Chancellor Angela Merkel has warned of a potential “catastrophe.” Related: Live coverage of the crisis in Ukraine If, as expected, Crimeans choose Russia over Ukraine, the fallout could ultimately affect economic growth, trade, investment and energy supplies. Sanctions: Western powers may move as early as Monday [...]

MAP via Sentencing Project: How Felon Voting Policies Restrict the Black vote

March 3, 2014 // 0 Comments

Cartogram of disenfranchisement rates, 2010. (Sentencing Project) In Florida, more than one in five black adults can’t vote. Not because they lack citizenship or haven’t registered, but because they have, at some point, been convicted of a felony. More than 20 percent of black adults have lost their right to vote in Florida, Kentucky and Virginia, according to the Sentencing Project, a group that advocates for reforms to sentencing policy that reduces racial [...]
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