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From the staff of the Tampa Bay Times

Scott lawyers want him dropped from elections case



Lawyers for Gov. Rick Scott have filed a motion with the U.S. District Court, arguing that Scott should be dismissed from the ACLU's challenge to a new law overhauling the state elections code.

The civil liberties group is seeking to block implementation of the new law that narrows early voting from 14 days to eight and imposes stricter deadlines on third-party groups that conduct voter registration efforts. It was House Bill 1355 in the spring 2011 session of the Legislature.

The motion filed by Scott's general counsel, Charles Trippe, Jr., and others on the governor's legal team argues that Scott has sovereign immunity from lawsuits; that he is not the official enforcing the new election law changes; and that the ACLU has not shown why the 62 Florida counties not subject to the Voting Rights Act shouldn't be able to carry out the new law.

"The plaintiffs (ACLU) are unable to cite any provision of HB 1355 over which the Governor has enforcement authority," Scott's lawyers argue. The only other named defendant in the case is Secretary of State Kurt Browning, the state's chief elections officer.

[Last modified: Friday, July 22, 2011 11:07am]


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