Senate Passes Ballot Measure On Court Appointments

TALLAHASSEE, Fla. (AP) — This year’s gubernatorial race could have even greater implications if a proposed constitutional amendment on Supreme Court appointments is also approved.

The Senate voted 26-14 on Thursday to place a question on the fall ballot that could mean an outgoing governor would make appointments to the Supreme Court for vacancies that are created the same day a new governor is sworn in.

That means if Gov. Rick Scott is re-elected, he will be able to fill three vacancies expected to occur as he leaves office in 2019 because of a mandatory retirement age for justices.

Democrats opposed the bill, arguing that if people elect a governor in November, that governor should be the one to appoint the Supreme Court justices for vacancies that begin on inauguration day two months later.

Copyright 2014 The Associated Press. All rights reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten or redistributed.

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