Attorneys persist in Supreme Court blind trust case

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Attorneys seeking to challenge the 2013 Florida law allowing elected officials to use blind trusts continued to urge the Florida Supreme Court on Wednesday to take up the case.

Talbot “Sandy” D’Alemberte and Patsy Palmer filed a brief with the court on Wednesday, disputing the state’s argument that the case should be either thrown out or sent back to the lower court.

According to the brief, the petition “contains no factual controversies that warrant transfer of the case to trial court, and the requested remedies would affect Democrats and Republicans equally.”

“It is not a partisan effort.”

D’Alemberte and Palmer are representing Jim Apthorp the former chief of staff for Gov. Reubin Askew. The brief, filed last week, contends that blind trusts are a violation of the disclosure requirements of the Sunshine Amendment.

Both Attorney General Pam Bondi and the Legislature filed a response on Monday calling for the justices to reject the case.

Gov. Rick Scott, a health-care multimillionaire, put his assets in a blind trust upon taking office.

However, the governor’s campaign manager, Melissa Sellers, said Scott would comply with the decision of the court.

In addition to the brief filed on Wednesday, the attorneys also filed motions requesting the Supreme Court hold oral arguments on the issue.

Peter Schorsch is the President of Extensive Enterprises and is the publisher of some of Florida’s most influential new media websites, including SaintPetersBlog.com, FloridaPolitics.com, ContextFlorida.com, and Sunburn, the morning read of what’s hot in Florida politics. SaintPetersBlog has for three years running been ranked by the Washington Post as the best state-based blog in Florida. In addition to his publishing efforts, Peter is a political consultant to several of the state’s largest governmental affairs and public relations firms. Peter lives in St. Petersburg with his wife, Michelle, and their daughter, Ella.