Brenda Snipes, who resigned as Broward County Elections Supervisor effective January 4, 2019, then purported to rescind the resignation after Florida Governor and Senator-Elect Rick Scott removed her from office, has filed a lawsuit in federal court in the Northern District of Florida seeking reinstatement.

The Emergency Complaint (pdf.)(full embed at bottom of post) is being treated by the Court as a motion for a preliminary injunction.

Here are some of the key allegations:

25. Just prior to her resignation, Governor Scott orchestrated a campaign strategy where he filed numerous baseless lawsuits against Snipes; unsuccessfully attempted to send in the Florida Department of Law Enforcement citing untrue claims of election fraud on the part of Snipes and the Palm Beach County Supervisor of Elections.

26. Governor Scott also made other attempts to harass Snipes with allegations of unfounded criminal mischief, staged protesters and refused to assist Snipes’ office in any productive way – even though Governor Scott ordered several people from the Secretary of State’s Office to monitor Snipes during both the primary and general election.

27. Governor Scott, and others working on his behalf, tried in every way to damage Snipes’ reputation and inject doubt into the minds of Broward voters that the Broward County elections process was being conducted properly. Tweets from the President of the United States and untrue allegations made by Governor Scott resulted in death threats against Snipes and her family members.

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31. Without notice, on November 30, 2018, Governor Scott issued Executive Order 18-342 suspending Snipes as the Broward County Supervisor of Elections. This action was taken after 5:00 PM on a Friday and state highway patrol officers were shown on television news stations for days parked outside of Supervisor of Elections Office buildings. (See Exhibit 4 — Executive Order 18-342).

32. If Snipes had been given the opportunity for adequate due process, Snipes would have defended herself against the allegations contained within Governor Scott’s Executive Order….

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37. Snipes seeks to fight for her reputation and stand up against the embarrassment that has been caused by Governor Scott’s unnecessary and malicious suspension. There are false allegations contained within the Executive Order and Snipes has never had proper forum to state her position. The Governor’s suspension has gained national attention as a widely publicized matter. Snipes’ reputation as a well-respected leader within the State of Florida has been damaged while the Governor has mounted daily attacks through various sources aimed to damage Snipes.

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43. In light of the Senate’s refusal to review the Governor’s actions, Governor Scott and the Senate are operating in concert to deny Snipes her due process rights under the Fourteenth Amendment of the United States Constitution.

Snipes also filed a Notice of Constitutional Challenge of Statute (pdf.)(full embed at bottom of post) challenging Florida election law.

A scheduling conference has been scheduled for December 20, 2018, according to a Court Order:

Plaintiff has filed her Emergency Complaint for Declaratory and Injunction Relief, ECF No. 1, claiming Florida law is unconstitutional regarding executive suspensions and seeking an injunction compelling Defendants to refrain from enforcing the law and to allow Plaintiff to resume her office as Supervisor of Elections of Broward County.

Plaintiff has not filed a motion for temporary restraining order. This Court will not issue an order without a hearing or an opportunity for Defendants to be heard.

This Court recognizes that Defendants have not been served and thus counsel for Defendants have not made appearances. However, time is of the essence and counsel for Plaintiff can certainly contact counsel for Defendants – General Counsel for the Governor and counsel for the President of the Florida Senate. To promote the orderly and prompt resolution of the of the motion,

IT IS ORDERED:

1. The attorneys for all parties must confer prior to the scheduling conference in a good faith effort to reach agreement on the scheduling of a hearing on the motion for a preliminary injunction and on other procedural and substantive issues relating to the motion, including the need for live testimony and the admissibility of declarations.

2. The Clerk shall set a telephonic scheduling conference for the motion for preliminary injunction, ECF No. 1, for Thursday, December 20, 2018, at 3:30 p.m.

3. Plaintiff shall ensure that Defendants are served with a copy of this order and the Emergency Complaint for Declaratory and Injunction Relief, ECF No. 1, by Tuesday, December 18, 2018, at 5:00 p.m. and file proof of service on or before Wednesday, December 19, 2018, at 10:00 a.m.

SO ORDERED on December 18, 2018.

[This post has been expanded and updated]

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Brenda Snipes v. Rick Scott… by on Scribd

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Brenda Snipes v. Rick Scott… by on Scribd