ACLU Applauds Florida Supreme Court Decision Striking Amendment 7

Affiliate: ACLU of Florida
August 31, 2010 12:00 am

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Failed Proposal was Designed to Confuse Voters and Maintain the Legislature’s Power to gerrymander districts


TALLAHASSEE, Fla. – The American Civil Liberties Union of Florida today released the following statement, attributable to Howard Simon, Executive Director:

“Late today, the Florida Supreme Court affirmed a circuit court ruling striking proposed amendment 7 from the November 2010 ballot, while simultaneously – in a separate decision – keeping proposed amendments 5 & 6 on the ballot. The ACLU applauds the Florida Supreme Court’s efforts to reign in this unfair power grab by the Florida Legislature.

“The amendment was nothing more than a ploy by the Florida Legislature to ensure that legislators would have the power to continue to gerrymander Congressional and legislative districts in Florida.

“The deliberately misleading amendment was designed to undermine the Fair Districts Amendments 5 and 6, which are citizen’s initiatives that will set strict standards for politicians. Proposed amendments 5 and 6 ensure that politicians cannot draw legislative and Congressional districts to favor a particular party or incumbent politician, regardless of their party affiliation.

“Fortunately, the Florida Supreme Court did not fall for the arguments set forth by proponents of Amendment 7. They recognized the tangled, jargon-filled amendment for what it was: another way that politicians create safe seats to protect their incumbency and avoid accountability to their constituents.

“Now that this attempt to confuse and mislead voters has been beaten, the opponents of the Fair Districts amendments will aim their negative attacks on proposed amendments 5 and 6 in a desperate attempt to save the power of legislators to pick their own voters.

“Let’s put an end to Florida’s distorted political process.”

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