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Greyhound Racing Ban Kicked Off Ballot, Appeal Filed

August 2nd, 2018 by Mike Vasilinda

Voters may or may not get a chance to vote on banning Greyhound Racing in Florida. A judge has ruled the language voters will see is misleading and ordered if off the November ballot, but her order won’t be the final word.

The humane treatment of animals is a fundamental value read the first words of the proposal to ban greyhound racing. But nowhere in the ballot summary voters would see is that printed. Because of that, and because Floridians at dog tracks would still be able to bet on dog racing in other states. The judge ruled the amendment “hides the ball” and flies under a false flag. She ordered it off the ballot

“In 25 pages she she made the points very very clearly,” says Jack Cory of the Florida Greyhound Association. 

The Association filed the challenge.

“There were multiple points of unconstitutionality. Most importantly, that the constitution and the state statute requires that the body of the amendment that goes on the ballot to be clear” says Cory.

Attorney General and avid dog lover Pam Bondi is promising an expedited appeal to the state Supreme Court.

“We’re really disappointed with the ruling” says Kate McFall with Yes on 13.

Yes on 13 was surprised by the order, believe they will win on appeal, and call it a bad decision. 

“And a judge found that it is misleading. Is it?” We asked.

“No. It’s not misleading. We don’t think so at all and none of the lawyers on our team think its misleading. We think this was a bad ruling.”

The clock is ticking for the court. Most elections supervisors say they need their ballots to the printer no later than the first week of September.

Even if the court doesn’t make the ballot printing deadline, and if justices rule with the Greyhound Association, they court could simply order any votes for 13 not be counted.

A spokesman for the state Supreme Court said vacationing justices are already monitoring an active death warrant and “will do so with any other time-sensitive cases that might require a quick judicial response in the weeks ahead.”

 

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