Virginia speaker cancels floor session after veto promise

RICHMOND, Va. (AP) — Virginia’s Republicans say there’s little chance the General Assembly will be able to draw a new legislative map aimed at fixing an unconstitutional racial gerrymander ahead of a court-ordered deadline.

GOP House Speaker Kirk Cox on Friday cancelled a planned floor session for later this month, saying it would be a waste of time after Democratic Gov. Ralph Northam promised to veto a GOP-drawn map that had the backing of some Democrats.

Republicans also filed notice with the court that they are unlikely to make an Oct. 30 deadline. A federal court ruled this summer that lawmakers illegally packed black voters into 11 districts and ordered lawmakers to draw a new map ahead of that deadline.

Northam said Tuesday that the court was best positioned to draw a new map.

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