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House Speaker wants FL Governor to Enforce Gay Adoption Ban

January 31, 2011

Dean Cannon


Despite Florida’s courts overturning the gay adoption ban, House Speaker Dean Cannon wants the Governor to direct the Department of Children and Families to enforce the law.

Concerning the homosexual adoption ban, Cannon said the Legislature may reassert its position affirming the prohibition if that becomes necessary, but is awaiting word whether the Scott administration will continue to enforce the ban.

“The tactical calculus is to make a change [in the law] would almost imply that you agree that there was some flaw identified by the Third DCA,” Cannon said of the Legislature’s options after the Third District Court of Appeal overturned the law last year.

“Because that’s just in one district, it may make sense to wait and see if that Third DCA opinion is eventually brought up with another case and either overturned or affirmed by the Supreme Court,” he said.

“Until we know how the governor and DCF secretary are going to apply it, it’s not a foregone conclusion that the Legislature should step in,” he said. “If we think we should, we’re certainly prepared and willing to do so.”

Asked if the governor should enforce the law, Cannon replied, “Absolutely.”

In September, Florida’s Third District Court of Appeal upheld a 2008 trial court opinion finding “no rational basis” for Florida’s 33-year-old homosexual adoption ban. In response, then-Gov. Charlie Crist directed the Department of Children and Families to stop enforcing the law.

Then-Attorney General Bill McCollum, who had recently lost in the gubernatorial primary to Rick Scott, chose not to appeal the ruling, and the time to appeal has since lapsed.

Controversy about the adoption ban re-emerged Jan. 19 in response to Scott’s appointment of David Wilkins, a board member of Florida Baptist Children’s Homes, as the new DCF secretary. Critics expressed concern Wilkins’ connection to FBCH may suggest support for the ban.

via Cannon: Gov. Scott should ‘absolutely’ enforce gay adoption ban – Florida Baptist Witness.