The state today filed an appeal to the court decision halting enforcement of the state’s controversial welfare drug testing law.
Late last month, a U.S. court in Orlando granted Luis Lebron and the American Civil Liberties Union of Florida an injunction against the new state law requiring welfare applicants to be drug tested. A Navy veteran and single father, Lebron was denied temporary assistance benefits he was otherwise qualified for because he refused to waive his Fourth Amendment rights and submit to a drug test.
Now the state is going to fight the decision.
Gov. Rick Scott said in a statement today that he has “no doubt that the law is constitutional, and that it is supported by the great weight of judicial authority.”
“The court erred in rejecting the State’s arguments,” he said, “and was unjustified in blocking the will of the People’s elected representatives. An overwhelming majority of Floridians support this law, and I will continue to fight for it in the courts.”
Howard Simon of the ACLU of Florida says, “It’s disappointing — but not surprising — that the governor has instructed his attorneys to continue defending the indefensible.”
“Gov. Scott wants to continue wasting more money on a legal crusade defending a campaign pledge to create an unconstitutional, big-government program that is itself a waste of money,” he said in a statement today.
So, far there has been a lot of uncertainty surrounding the implementation of the new law and the effect it has had on an already vulnerable population. Opponents have taken most issue with the constitutional infringements of the law.
“The ACLU of Florida will defend the federal court’s condemnation of invasive, stigmatizing, and unconstitutional suspicionless searches, and protect the constitutional rights of Luis Lebron and all TANF applicants,” Simon said.