The Court has removed various amendments from the ballot without establishing any clear standards
Floridians have the right to amend our Constitution and the Supreme Court has a duty to protect that right.
The Court has an uneven record when it comes to allowing or removing proposed Constitutional Amendments on the ballot.
We already touched on the Healthcare Freedom Amendment that was removed in 2010. They refused to allow the full text of the amendment to go on the ballot in place of the proposed summary. However the court has previously allowed the full text of an amendment to go on the ballot. In that case, it was speculated that a majority of the court did not favor the amendment and the full text included unfavorable language that would make the amendment less likely to pass.
They also removed two other amendments in 2010, both of which were proposed by the Legislature. The first (Roberts v Doyle) would have allowed an increased homestead exemption from property taxes and was challenged by the AFL-CIO! The second case, Florida Department of State v NAACP, aimed to clarify the two “Fair District” amendments that were proposed by a special interest organization and ultimately passed. The language in the two “Fair District” amendments were, and still are, considered unworkable by the legislature which is tasked with drawing the new districts, and allow almost any redistricting proposals to be legally challenged by establishing undefined requirements.
One has to wonder what the difference is between the amendments they allow on the ballot and the one’s they don’t. The standards are extremely vague, giving cover for the Court to make decisions based on their policy preferences rather than rule of law.