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Surpeme Court Appointments To Stay With Incoming Governor After Amendment 3 Fails

Florida Supreme Court

Florida Voters have rejected a constitutional amendment that would have given an outgoing governor the ability to name future state Supreme Court Justices.

Opponents of Amendment Three called the proposal a power-grab, and League of Women Voters of Florida President Diedre McNabb agrees it was a bad idea.          

“You really can’t think of any other situation where you asking an outgoing elected official to pick the team that will be serving in the future. That’s what this proposal by the legislature was proposing to do. Voters said no, and they said no strongly," she says.

Supporters of Amendment Three claimed the constitution wasn’t clear on whether the incoming or outgoing governor could make the appointments. The terms of three left-leaning Florida Supreme Court Justices expire in 2019 the same day a new governor will take office. Opponents argued it was political and could tilt the balance of the court. The Failure of Amendment Three means the person who will succeed Gov. Rick Scott will have the power to name replacement justices.

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Lynn Hatter is a Florida A&M University graduate with a bachelor’s degree in journalism. Lynn has served as reporter/producer for WFSU since 2007 with education and health care issues as her key coverage areas.  She is an award-winning member of the Capital Press Corps and has participated in the NPR Kaiser Health News Reporting Partnership and NPR Education Initiative. 

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