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R. Fred Lewis

Justices to hear case over Supreme Court appointments

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The Florida Supreme Court said Friday it will hear arguments this fall in a case that could help shape the future of the court. The Supreme Court scheduled arguments for Nov. 1 in a battle about whether Gov. Rick Scott will have the authority to appoint as many as three new justices as he leaves office in January 2019.

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Supreme Court orders argument in judicial appointments case

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The Florida Supreme Court will hear oral argument in the case against Gov. Rick Scott over whether he has the authority to appoint three new justices on the last day of his term. The court on Friday set argument for 9 a.m. Nov. 1. For now, the matter will be heard by the court’s seven justices, including the three—R. Fred Lewis, Barbara Pariente and Peggy A. Quince—whose age-required retirements occasioned the suit.

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Justices reject resentencing in 1976 murder

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In a case stemming from the 1976 strangulation of a 13-year-old girl, the Florida Supreme Court on Thursday rejected arguments that a Death Row inmate should receive a new sentencing hearing. The arguments by attorneys for inmate James Ernest Hitchcock were rooted in a major 2016 U.S. Supreme Court ruling and subsequent Florida decisions that have led to requiring unanimous jury recommendations before defendants can be sentenced to death.

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Groups get more time to respond in suit over Supreme Court justices

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The progressive groups suing Rick Scott will get till next Thursday to respond to his request to toss out a lawsuit that aims to stop the Republican governor from appointing three Supreme Court justices on his last day in office. The Florida Supreme Court gave the League of Women Voters of Florida (LWVF) and Common Cause till Aug. 10 to file a reply, according to a Monday order.

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Attorney General candidate Ryan Torrens calls out Rick Scott for attempt to pack Supreme Court

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In one of his first public statements since he announced his candidacy last month, Democratic Attorney General candidate Ryan Torrens says he’s strongly opposed to Rick Scott’s attempt to replace three members of the Florida Supreme Court on his last day of office in 2019. “In 2014, Florida voters had an opportunity to approve a constitutional amendment which would have permitted this practice and our voters rejected it,” Torrens said. “Governor Scott needs to respect the wishes of Florida voters and permit our…

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Rick Scott gets more time to respond to judicial appointments lawsuit

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The Florida Supreme Court on Thursday granted Gov. Rick Scott‘s request for 14 extra days to respond to a lawsuit claiming he doesn’t have authority to appoint three new justices on the last day of his term. Scott general counsel Daniel Nordby filed the request Wednesday, asking to move the deadline to July 19. “Multiple extensions of time for the same filing are discouraged,” the court’s order says. “Absent extenuating circumstances, subsequent requests may be denied. All other times are extended…

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Rick Scott asked to respond to judicial appointments lawsuit

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The Florida Supreme Court has asked Gov. Rick Scott to respond to a lawsuit claiming he doesn’t have authority to appoint three new justices on the last day of his term. The court on Friday gave Scott till July 5 to file a response, with the League of Women Voters of Florida (LWVF) and Common Cause having a July 17 deadline to reply to Scott’s filing. The organizations this week filed a petition for “writ of quo warranto,” a court action against government…

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