- Associated Press - Friday, August 28, 2015

TALLAHASSEE, Fla. (AP) - A group including a Pensacola state legislator and the chairman of the Alachua County Republican Party is launching a new legal challenge to two amendments passed by voters.

Rep. Mike Hill and Stafford Jones are among a group of people who filed a lawsuit Thursday in federal court. The lawsuit contends that the “Fair Districts” amendments violate the U.S. constitution including the 1st Amendment.

The amendments prohibit the Florida Legislature from drawing legislative and congressional districts that benefit an incumbent or a member of a political party. Florida courts have ruled that legislators violated these amendments and drew up districts designed to benefit Republicans.

But the lawsuit maintains that the court rulings have blocked the ability of citizens to discuss redistricting with legislators, including privately.

Others involved in the lawsuit include GOP political consultants and some Alachua Democrats.

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