Rick Scott Abandons Welfare Drug Testing Laws

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Rick Scott Abandons Welfare Drug Testing Laws

Florida Gov. Rick Scott will abandon his pursuit of a U.S. Supreme Court review of a law that would have required welfare applicants to take mandatory drug tests, reported The Huffington Post.

“We chose not to appeal this case,” said Jackie Schultz, spokesperson for Rick Scott. “The governor is continuing to protect Florida children any way he can and create an environment where families can get jobs so they are able to pursue their dreams in safe communities.”

Gov. Scott had been adamant about passing the law, which several courts have ruled is unconstitutional. The first of such rulings came from U.S. District Judge Mary Scriven in Orlando when she ruled that the law was an “unconstitutional search and seizure.” The 11th Circuit Court of Appeals upheld Scriven’s ruling this past December, after Florida appealed in the case of Luis Lebron.

Lebron’s case was brought by The American Civil Liberties Union. Lebron is a single father and refused to take a drug test while applying for Temporary Assistance for Needy Families (TANF) benefits in 2011.

Scott also issued an executive order that forced random drug testing for state employees, but a Miami federal judge struck down the order. In 2012, Aasif Mandvi of The Daily Show showed up to the Florida State Budget Presentation and confronted Gov. Scott to “pee in a cup,” citing Scott’s executive order. In classic Scott fashion, he ducked.

Scott’s abandonment of a high judicial review was a righteous cause for celebration.

“After four years of litigation, this ugly attack on poor Floridians has finally come to an end,” said ACLU of Florida Executive Director Howard Simon. “This law was always about scoring political points on the backs of Florida’s poor and treating them like suspected criminals without suspicion or evidence.”

It’s refreshing for Floridians to see that Gov. Scott is abandoning one of his crooked, unfair laws. Scott has been a plague on the state of Florida and how he got reelected last year remains baffling. He can’t leave soon enough.