The House and Senate have put forward very different redistricting plans for Florida’s Congressional delegation, while the Governor made an unwise and unprecedented foray into the matter pushing a very partisan gerrymander (outside of southeast Florida- in that region the DeSantis map interestingly is the most favorable for the Democrats). Let’s compare the three plans here.
While Governor DeSantis plan has not gotten a legislative airing, he has the power of the veto so the principles of his map must be considered in this discussion.
Since district numbers vary by plan we’re going to list seats based on current incumbent or “new” and look at the PVI per district. I realize the official information isn’t allowed to list partisan information, but since that’s really the overriding consideration with every map being drawn, let’s look at the actual numbers.
In this era of partisan gerrymandering throughout the nation and increased polarization, fewer and fewer seats are actually competitive.
House: R + 38, Senate R + 38, DeSantis R + 38
House R + 37 Senate R + 40, DeSantis R + 15
Safe Republican, but note the DeSantis plan due to its dismembering of Al Lawson’s seat includes all of Leon County in this seat and therefore makes this seat significantly less Republican than the other two plans.
House R + 23, Senate R + 18, DeSantis R +25
House R + 30, Senate R +28, DeSantis R + 23
House D + 15, Senate D + 17, DeSantis R +16
*Safe Democratic for House & Senate, Safe Republican for DeSantis*
GOP Pickup on DeSantis map
The overriding goal of the DeSantis plan is to dismember this seat while making the Tampa Bay Area seats more likely to go Republican. Using compactness as a constitutional justification, the Governor continues to obsess over the shape of this VRA-induced seat. What the DeSantis plan would really do is deprive not only African-American, but non-Republicans in urban Duval and Leon counties of representation in Congress. Keep in mind Joe Biden carried both counties in 2020.
House R + 21, Senate R + 22, DeSantis R + 26
Safe Republican (Note Rep. Waltz doesn’t actually live in the seat drawn on the House map)
House R + 12, Senate D + 2, DeSantis R + 14
Likely Republican (flip) – Flipping this seat from D to R is probably the single biggest national consideration for the GOP. However, many Florida Republicans may not like the idea of State Rep. Anthony Sabatini being in Congress (He has MTG-like embarrassment power written all over him), so let’s see if ultimately the Senate position wins out or is closer to the final reality. The Senate map would give the Democrats a shot at retaining the current CD-7
House R + 23, Senate R +23, DeSantis R + 22
House D + 27, Senate D + 19, DeSantis D +25
House D +17, Senate D + 17, DeSantis D + 17
House R + 22, Senate R + 36, DeSantis R + 23
House R + 31, Senate R + 28, DeSantis R + 29
House R + 22, Senate R + 23 DeSantis R + 23
Safe Republican, would shed most of current Hillsborough areas in every map
New Tampa Bay area seat
House R + 3 Senate D +4, DeSantis R + 4
Competitive, but House and DeSantis make this a GOP-lean seat while Senate map leans this seat toward the Democrats.
House D +4, Senate R + 1, DeSantis D + 20
This seat is a toss-up on the Senate map, a lean Dem on the House map and strongly Dem in the DeSantis map as it packs Dems in the seat to make the adjoining districts more likely Republican
House R + 2, Senate R + 3, DeSantis R + 14
Leans to Likely Republican (flip)
Pinellas County has trended to the right in recent years but the House and Senate maps keep this seat as competitive with slight GOP lean. The DeSantis map would make it a safe R seat. But any map makes it tough for the Dems to defend and some of that is just a natural GOP trend locally , hence Charlie Crist’s decision to run yet again for Governor.
House R + 15, Senate R + 16, DeSantis R + 13
House R + 32, Senate R + 29, DeSantis R + 25
House R + 14, Senate R + 14, DeSantis R + 8
Safe Republican to Likely Republican on the DeSantis map. The DeSantis map does leave this seat vulnerable potentially in a wave year as the GOP trend in the Treasure Coast and North Palm Beach County has not tracked along at the pace of the shift in other parts of the state.
House R + 25, Senate R + 30, DeSantis R + 24
House D + 14, Senate R +14, DeSantis R + 16
House D + 8, Senate D + 8, DeSantis D + 6
Leans Democratic , the areas in this district have gradually gotten more Republican since about 2015, making this seat still a Democratic one, but not entirely safe, particularly if a real GOP wave election were to occur.
House D + 50, Senate D +48, DeSantis D + 43
Safe Democratic, interestingly in the DeSantis map this seat is a lot more compact and less of an eyesore. Any configuration leaves it heavily Democratic, but the net result of the DeSantis map, believe it or not is to make the surrounding districts currently held by Reps. Frankel and Wilson slightly more Democratic than on the other maps.
House D + 19, Senate D + 17, DeSantis D+ 14
House D + 51, Senate D + 52, DeSantis D + 55
House R + 15, Senate R + 10, DeSantis R + 23
Safe Republican, although the DeSantis map wastes a lot of Republican votes in this district which helps Democrats in adjoining districts on that particular map.
House EVEN, Senate D + 1, DeSantis D + 2
TOSS UP, though the GOP trend in this area since 2017 is noticeable. The DeSantis map gives this seat a slight Dem lean, the other two would make it a pure toss-up.
House R + 4, Senate R + 5, DeSantis R + 2
Leans Republican, Despite being a partisan gerrymander in the rest of the state, the DeSantis map actually makes Dems chances of flipping back the two southeast Florida congressional seats they lost in 2020 better.
On the whole, the maps contain very few competitive districts, with the map offered by the Governor’s office flipping three current Dem held seats to the GOP, without making them competitive.
The maps offered in the legislature due make all three core-Tampa Bay area seats competitive, but that benefits the GOP as two of the seats are currently held by Democrats and one would be a new seat.
Oddly, and unbeknownst to me, until undertook this exercise (has this been widely reported?), the map from Governor DeSantis office is the best for the Democrats in southeast Florida even though it’s pretty clearly the worst in the rest of the state for the Democratic Party. Go figure that one out.