Supreme Court: House violated constitution

PBPO News:

The Supreme Court denied the House’s request to force it back into session. It stated that it would not produce any “beneficial result.”

This is the good news for House. In a concurring opinion by Justice Barbara Pariente, five of seven justices stated that the House had broken the constitution by breaking it early.

She wrote that the constitution “clearly prohibits one house from adjourning in any manner for more than seventy two consecutive hours without consent of the other.”

She found persuasive the 1974 Pennsylvania Supreme Court decision, that each side of a bicameral legislature has an “strong interest” to the other,

The Pennsylvania high court stated that “the greatest threat to this interest” is the possibility of the other house adjourning, disabling it from the consideration and payment of bills. “Protection against such a possibility is provided for each house by the Constitution through a power to refuse consent to the adjournment.

Senator Darren Soto, a Orlando Democrat, stated that his caucus had “fought to establish a permanent precedent today that both chambers of the law are equal.”

He said, “I am proud the Supreme Court agreed to us, and this is now law of the land for the future Florida legislatures.”

In an email to the media, Republican House Speaker Steve Crisafulli stated that his interpretation meant “the Senate violated its Constitutional duty throughout the Session when it adjourned more than 72 hours without consent from the House in the form of concurrent resolution.”

He said that the adjourning sine die decision was one of his most difficult as a legislator. “The level and intensity of the acrimony, and the unprecedented demand that we pass a bill to implement policy before approving budget allocations were what ultimately drove me to complete our policy work and return home. I thought that taking a few more weeks off was the best way for us to be in a position of passing a budget.

Crisafulli said, “With the lawsuits finished and some time to reflect, we can return with an improved level of civility on both our sides.” “We will make amends for these three days and more. We appreciate your patience during this unusual session. I believe that better days are ahead.