Fla. Dems hold sit-in; Roach calls act 'insurrection'

House votes to strip Disney of special status, redraw district map
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Posted at 2:39 PM, Apr 21, 2022
and last updated 2022-04-21 17:46:48-04

TALLAHASSEE, Fla. — House Republicans are trying to push through a vote over congressional redistricting despite a sit-in and vocal disruptions by Democratic colleagues.

As debate on the maps was nearing an end, Reps. Angie Nixon and Travaris McCurdy opened up their suit jackets to display “Stop The Black Attack” T-shirts and shouted the same phrase.

Per state political reporter Forrest Saunders, singing of "We Shall Overcome" was heard from within the house chambers as the sit-in took hold just before noon Thursday.

Thursday's agenda included votes on three bills; two targeting Disney privileges in the wake of the company's dissent from Gov. Ron DeSantis over LGBTQ rights, and one regarding the state's congressional districting map.

The DeSantis map would increase Florida’s GOP representation in Florida and dismantles two districts now held by Black members of Congress.

Their approval would then send the legislation to the governor, who will sign.

Rep. Angie Nixon is calling for a redraw of the map saying she won’t be moved. In a video streamed from her Facebook page, she says "DeSantis does not care about Black people ... There is an incessant attack against Black people in the State of Florida."

The representative's political Facebook page posted an invitation for the public to watch "as we stand up for democracy and fair representation" earlier Thursday morning, just before 7 a.m.

"We demand Gov. DeSantis put aside his ambitions and #StopBlackAttacks in Florida once and for all," she wrote.

Nixon and McCurdy could be heard shouting over Republicans as they tried to carry on with discussion and voting on the agenda item. The two Disney-related bills were pushed through.

Republican House member Rep. Spencer Roach called the sit-in "an insurrection" and "shameful" on Twitter.