Tallahassee, Fla. (AP) – On the first day of Black History Month, Republican Gov. Ron DeSantis asked the Florida Supreme Court if a Black congressman’s district was unconstitutional. Democratic U.S. Rep. Al Lawson responded that the governor is race baiting to build political points with his base.

The north Florida district runs from Jacksonville to Gadsden County. The Republican dominated Senate recently approved a map that largely keeps it intact. The Republican dominated House also has proposed maps that do the same. The Supreme Court last decade also approved the map as constitutional.

But now DeSantis is questioning whether the district meets the state and U.S. constitutions. The state requires that districts be compact, contiguous and not drawn to benefit or hurt a political party or candidate.

“I ask for your opinion to help me be sufficiently conscious of race to comply with the Florida Constitution’s antidiminishment provision but avoid being so conscious of race that my actions could violate the U.S. and Florida Constitutions,” wrote DeSantis, who is seeking reelection in 2022 and could be a presidential candidate in 2024.

On the night before Martin Luther King Day, DeSantis proposed new congressional maps _ a highly unusual move for a governor. The map included a redrawing of Lawson’s district so that it would contain more Republican voters and be more difficult for him to win re-election.