Everyone running for office and everyone already elected would be subject to mandatory drug testing under legislation filed in Tallahassee. The idea is a direct outgrowth of a Florida Congressman who was caught with cocaine.
Trey Radel’s career was short and ended traumatically after he was caught with cocaine. After the bust in Washington, Radel’s constituents went to their State Representative, Dane Eagle (R-Cape Coral). He’s filed the Drug Free Public Officers Act.
The legislation requires everyone elected to Federal, state or local office, including judges, to submit a drug test within 60 days of the election. And failure to get a drug test is an automatic resignation.”
Eagle says he was surprised when he wasn’t tested after being elected. “When I was running for high school class president, I had to get drug tested,” Eagle said. “I worked at Walgreens, I was drug tested. I worked in the Governor’s office, I was. Now that I represent 160,000 people, I’m not?”
Governor Rick Scott is no stranger to drug tests. He’s pushed them for state employees and welfare recipients. He was even spoofed by a fake news crew from Comedy Central.
In December 2011, a Comedy Central reporter asked the Governor, “Would you be willing to pee into this cup to prove to Florida taxpayers that you’re not on drugs…”
We asked the Governor what he thought of the latest drug testing proposal. “I haven’t reviewed the bill, but look I think everybody in our state that’s running for or in office, should be held accountable,” the Governor said.
Eagle filed the bill on the last day to do so. “But I don’t think when it’s in front of them they would vote it down,” Eagle said. “I don’t know how they could.”
No hearings are scheduled and the bill has yet to be assigned a committee.
The bill specifically covers those in Congress, but it is unlikely it could be enforced. Courts ruled against the state when it wanted to impose term limits on Congress, saying state law could not take precedence over the US Constitution, which sets the qualifications for holding federal office.
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