Remember when Gov. Rick Scott unveiled those severe budget cuts last February? To justify those deep cuts, he said this:
"As long as 1.1 million Floridians are out of work, we can't afford a government that runs wild with taxes, regulations and excessive spending."
Then he proceeded to spend superfluous amounts of the state's money; the taxpayers money, on things that had nothing to do with the budget, but did have a common theme. It seems that no amount of money is too excessive when it comes to infringing on the rights of Floridians.
Scott is suing on your behalf, and on your dime, to block the Affordable Care Act.
He's suing on your behalf, and your dime, to block your voting rights.
Another way Scott chose to spend taxpayer money "wisely" was on mandatory drug testing for welfare recipients, apparently on the false premise that all the poor in need of public assistance are also drug addicts. Because they are presumed guilty until proven otherwise, those being tested must first spring for the cost of the test, and on the "rare" occasion that the test results are positive, the testee is not reimbursed by the taxpayer.
The problem with this is that positive test results are not just "rare." They're nearly unheard of. Since the testing began in July, a mere 2 percent tested positive. The end result for yet another brilliant idea from "Gov. Fiscal" is that the testing costs the state more than it saves.
Luckily for those of us who prefer checks and balances, Scott is not quite the "Supreme Executive" that he purports to be, and the courts step in when needed, which is pretty often since Scott bought his way into power last January, and this case is no exception. Here the ACLU and the Florida Justice Institute stepped in, and the court ruled against Scott in favor of Luis Lebron, a Navy veteran who refused to take the mandatory drug test when he applied for temporary assistance to support his 4 year old son. Lebron qualified for benefits but refused to waive hes Fourth Amendment rights because he felt the law was wrong and unfair, and said "I defended the Constitution. Now I am asking the Constitution to defend me.” The judge agreed with Lebron and issued an injunction blocking the tests.
From Mother Jones:
....Federal court Judge Mary Scriven put a halt to the tea party Republican's marquee plan, concluding that "the wholesale, suspicionless drug testing of all applicants" for Florida's Temporary Assistance for Needy Families (TANF) constituted an unreasonable search in violation of the 4th Amendment.
"Though the State speaks in generalities about the 'public health risk, as well as the crime risk, associated with drugs' being 'beyond dispute,'it provides no concrete evidence that those risks are any more present in TANF applicants than in the greater population," Scriven wrote in her ruling against Florida's government. "It is not enough to simply recite a governmental interest without any evidence of a concrete threat that would be mitigated through drug testing."
Apparently Judge Mary Scriven was unaware of Rick Scott's own job description:
Governor: "Simply reciting a Governor's interest without any evidence."
From The Tampa Tribune:
"The court erred in rejecting the state's arguments, and was unjustified in blocking the will of the people's elected representatives," Scott said.
"Blocking the will of the people's elected representatives?"
The court "erred" because Rick Scott said so.
"It is not enough to simply recite a governmental interest without any evidence of a concrete threat that would be mitigated through drug testing."
Cross posted at Beach Peanuts
Fri Nov 04, 2011 at 12:13 PM PT: Wow. Thanks for all the recs!