Demonstrations planned today for opening of Florida legislative session

TALLAHASSEE — Political rallies and other events are in store for the opening day of the 2012 legislative session.

Members of the pro-union Awake the State network will be demonstrating on the steps of the Old Capitol on Tuesday. The Occupy Tallahassee movement says it will occupy the Capitol rotunda in the afternoon. And the Florida Tea Party Network also is planning events during the day.

Last year, a few hundred demonstrators lined either side of the street in front of Florida's Capitol to voice opposing views about government services and spending.

This year's legislative session is starting two months earlier than usual because lawmakers have to approve new voting districts based on the latest U.S. Census figures. The district maps must be ready in time for the 2012 elections.

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