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Text: Fla. Supreme Court Upholds Absentee Ballot Cases

eMediaMillWorks
eMediaMillWorks
Tuesday, December 12, 2000

Following is the transcript of Florida Supreme Court spokesman Craig Waters announcing the court's two 6-0 decisions upholding lower court rulings on absentee ballots.

WATERS: I have two matters to announce.

First, the court has issued its opinion in the case of Harry Jacobs v. Seminole County Canvassing Board, challenging certain absentee ballots. The trial court in this case found that the evidence does not support a finding of fraud, gross negligence or intentional wrongdoing in connection with any absentee ballots.

Today, the Supreme Court affirms this finding. In doing so, the court does not in any sense condone the irregularities noted by the trial court in the way applications for absentee ballots were handled. However, these irregularities do not require the voiding of all absentee ballots. The vote in this case was six to zero, with Justice Leander J. Shaw Jr. recused.

Second, the court also has decided the case of Ronald Taylor v. Martin County Canvassing Board, also challenging certain absentee ballots. The trial court in this case concluded that there were irregularities, but that they did not reach the level of fraud or intentional misconduct.

Accordingly, the trial court found that the sanctity of the ballot was not impaired.

Based on the rule of law explained in the Jacobs case that I just mentioned to you, the Supreme Court has affirmed the trial court's order. The vote, again, was six to zero, with Justice Leander J. Shaw Jr. recused.

Paper copies of the opinion will be available at the front door as soon as possible, and copies also will be posted on our duplicate web sites as soon as possible.

Thank you.

© 2000 The Washington Post Company


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