Rick Scott Still Wants to Drug-Test Poor People

Categories: Politicks

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At this point, Gov. Rick Scott has turned into your embarrassing uncle who won't stop ranting at dinner about how the government should drug-test everyone, no matter how clearly you explain that such a plan definitely violates the Constitution.

Except in this case, it's the federal court system that keeps telling Scott to back off. And Florida's governor is simply not interested. Weeks after the Supreme Court refused to hear his argument for why all state employees should have to pee in cups, Scott has filed a new brief in appellate court asking to re-argue his right to drug-test all welfare recipients in Florida.

See also: Supreme Court Won't Hear Rick Scott's Drug-Testing Case

The plan was originally halted by court order in October 2011 while the ACLU challenged it, and the U.S. District Court threw out the rule in December 2013 based on the arguments of a Navy veteran who said it violated his right against unreasonable search and seizure.

Scott is now back in appeals court, with a new brief filed this week in Atlanta that argues that because there is a "demonstrated problem with drug use" among welfare recipients, it should be legal to test.

"Drug use impedes... participants' ability to secure employment, [and] drug use harms individuals and families," Scott's lawyers argue.

There are a couple of glaring problems with that case, of course. The courts need only to look at what happened in the four months that welfare testing was in place in Florida to contradict the governor's arguments.

Scott's welfare drug-testing plan was among his core campaign promises when running for governor. And he kept it -- in July 2011 he signed HB 353, which set up the drug-screening requirements to get state assistance.

The plan was a political and policy disaster from the get-go. It didn't help Scott's image that the firm he'd founded before getting elected, Solantic, makes millions of dollars by drug-testing people and that the state law forced poor Floridians to pay for their own drug tests. (Scott divested his interest in the company but gave most shares to his wife.)

On the policy side, the tests mostly proved that welfare recipients don't do drugs very often. More than 4,000 people were tested while the program was in place, and a grand total of 108 failed. That's less than 3 percent.

To top it all off, the plan landed Scott in an immortal Daily Show sketch in which Aasif Mandvi tried to get the governor to pee in a cup at a news conference:

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93 comments
claygooding
claygooding

Scott has a vested interest in getting drug screening programs started,,he owns a drug testing company.

Follow the money,,,

fratdawgg23
fratdawgg23

The allegedly elected carpetbagger is devoid of empathy and unburdened by a conscience, two key traits of a sociopath.

Lulu Polsuza
Lulu Polsuza

hey if he wants to pay for it out of HIS pocket then I have no problem with it.

George Hoover
George Hoover

Ya bc he owns a fucking drug testing co errrrrr his blind trust does errrrr his wife does or some other entity he controls does. This guy is SCUM OF THE EARTH and the people of FloriDUH are dumber than a box of Rox if they give him another term!

Brandon Young
Brandon Young

Poor people are poor because they are lazy, stupid and do drugs, duh

Clara Sadurni Himel
Clara Sadurni Himel

Good! If I'm supporting you, you sure as hell should NOT be using whatever income you do have on drugs! I love how New Times sensationalized it by saying "drug testing poor people"...well...they are the ones receiving public assistance! Shame on you Miami New Times...

Michael Naranjo
Michael Naranjo

If you are receiving benefits from the government and can afford drugs you can afford to buy your food and support yourself as well as your habit.

Kriegar
Kriegar

No problem-budget deficit? Spend more money on stupidity. Drug testing welfare people, investigating Benghazi *(again....and again...). You know-business as usual.

Jayson Ttvp
Jayson Ttvp

Can we please start by frequently not rarely drug testing all government officials in congress, judges, cops etc?

SharonOlvera N JamesCypress
SharonOlvera N JamesCypress

I don't give a fuck to get job u get drug tested shit sure as hell drug test the ones getting free money your living off the government if you can afford drugs your not broke.

Adri Ana
Adri Ana

As long as they test all politicians also

Derrick Lang
Derrick Lang

Better than Charlie Christ's proposal to measure the length of all poor men. IT WAS FOR A PROJECT!

stevenbell415
stevenbell415

What about the soldier and all the elderly people who lost their life savings in the Bush Stock Market crash?A lot of poor people were not always poor and pay taxes.

There is a difference between a private employer drug testing for employment and the GOVERNMENT searching and seizing your body fluids!

Exiliado
Exiliado

Not all welfare recipients are poor.


Many of them are just fraudsters.

Ersen Alci
Ersen Alci

because Rick Scott owns the company who will administer the test.

Deejay Androz
Deejay Androz

Great idea.... Ppl are taking advantage of the goberment and if am paying for my taxes it better be for a good cause not for a lazy person that doesn't want to work

Carlos Orozco
Carlos Orozco

I agree 100%... free money and food...... it should be MANDATORY. I get randomly tested at my job. Why Not?

Iris DolceVita Rivera
Iris DolceVita Rivera

Take some economics classes assholes! Welfare is the LEAST thing your taxes pay for!!!

Wendy Coffee
Wendy Coffee

By no means am I a fan Rick Scott! But I'm also not a fan of paying for people that should be out working. Instead of using my tax $ to buy drugs and drain society.

pipoenespanol
pipoenespanol

I say lets drug test cops, judges, lawyers, law makers and any one employed by any county, city or state institution and if ANY of them test positive...FIRE THEIR ASS and take away all pensions and benefits, y pa'la pinga! 


What?!.....we can't do that?........why?!..........oh....lots of them would be out of a job....OK, NEVER MIND! Let's drug test the poor, fuck'em! 

Marie Annoual
Marie Annoual

Im not saying I support this idea and im not disagreeing that Rick probably supports it bc of what his wife stands to gain, what im arguing is that most of the people who are commenting that we should 'test everybody' are missing the point. Its not about 'get the poor' its about lets not support drug addicts and enable them by giving them public funds. The whole point of this drug testing idea is the belief that we should drug test people who are receiving money from the government to survive. Its very simple...if you are receiving aid then you shouldn't be using that money to support a drug habit. This has nothing to do with rich or poor. Its just a fact that you must not be making enough money to survive if you are relying on the government.

Rachel Penabella
Rachel Penabella

People should be more concerned with fraud. It's a way of life for some recipients, who know the system better than their own government. Drug Testing is just a Band-Aid - so what happens if they test positive? Report on that Miami Crap Times.

Onel Alvarez
Onel Alvarez

They should drug test everyone across the board. Rich, poor, white, black, etc. but more importantly they should drug test political officials. I'm opposed to any drug testing unless the job calls for making sure the public is safe. Either they drug test everyone or no one

Marie Annoual
Marie Annoual

Rich people dont live off of the government is an ignorant statement? You obviously do not understand the point lol.

Betty Perez
Betty Perez

His wife owns a drug testing company. His obsession is to make money at our expense. Get rid of this guy please!!

bignevermo
bignevermo

It seems like you are the one who is lazy(no research on this by you) stupid(self evident from your comment) and you have to be on drugs to think like this...whats your drug of choice??? Faux Noise?

axl.reinvented
axl.reinvented

Who says they're the ones buying the drugs? It's an illogical progression. Who's even to say they've recently used drugs? What kind of drug tests are in question here? Do you see how the Slippery Slope goes?

Exiliado
Exiliado

You get food stamps, right?

Exiliado
Exiliado

You are a welfare recipient, right?

stevenbell415
stevenbell415

What about the soldier and all the elderly people who lost their life savings in the Bush Stock Market crash. Poor people were not always poor and do

pay taxes. There is a difference between testing by private employers and having the GOVERNMENT searching and seizing you body fluids.

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