TALLAHASSEE, Fla. (AP) - A Florida appeals court is ruling that state legislators and legislative staff don't have to answer questions in a contentious lawsuit.
A divided 1st District Court of Appeals on Wednesday struck down an earlier decision connected to a challenge to Florida's new map for its 27 congressional districts.
A coalition of groups sued last year and maintained legislators violated new standards for drawing up the districts. Those standards mandate districts can't be drawn to protect incumbents.
Lawyers wanted to interview legislators and staff about their reasons for drawing up the maps a certain way.
Judge Terry Lewis ruled in October that some questioning was allowed.
But the appeals court ruled by a 2-1 margin that legislators and staff have a privilege that protects them from having to testify.
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