A suspended state attorney in Florida sued Gov. Ron DeSantis on Wednesday, claiming that the Republican violated the prosecutor’s constitutional rights by eradicating him from office and is making an attempt to thwart the desire of Sunshine State voters.
Andrew Warren was the state attorney for Hillsborough County, which incorporates town of Tampa, till DeSantis suspended him earlier this month.
The two clashed over what the governor referred to as Warren’s lax strategy to prosecuting criminals and the state attorney’s avowed refusal to implement the state’s 15-week abortion ban or any potential legal guidelines limiting gender-affirming look after transgender folks.
Warren, who was first elected in 2016 and re-elected in 2020, claimed in the lawsuit filed in Tampa federal courtroom that DeSantis infringed on his First Amendment rights when the governor ousted him.
“As a result of Warren’s decision to continue to speak out on issues his constituents elected him to pursue, DeSantis suspended Warren from his elected office and has deprived Warren of the ability to perform his duties, of his income, and of the benefits associated with the job,” he says within the 28-page swimsuit.
Warren admitted to becoming a member of different prosecutors across the nation in signing two statements opposing abortion restrictions and “[b]lls that criminalize safe and crucial medical treatments or the mere public existence of trans people” however insisted that neither assertion referred to a selected Florida regulation.
Despite that, Warren stated, DeSantis’ govt order booting him from office cites his signatures on the 2 statements.
“Of course, DeSantis is free to express his views and his disagreements with Warren as often as he likes. Indeed, the Federal Constitution ensures that he is,” Warren says within the courtroom submitting.
“But on Thursday August 4, 2022, DeSantis went too far. Employing the powers of his esteemed office as a weapon to suppress criticism and promote cronyism, DeSantis promulgated Executive Order 22-176 suspending Warren from his duly elected office,” it goes on.
At a information convention Wednesday morning, Warren accused the governor of an “illegal abuse of power.”
“There’s so much more at stake here than my job. Ron DeSantis is hoping to get away with overturning a fair election, throwing out the votes of hundreds of thousands of Floridians,” he stated.
“By challenging this illegal abuse of power, we can make sure that no governor can toss out the results of an election because he doesn’t like the outcome,” Warren added.
DeSantis, who’s prone to enter the 2024 Republican presidential main race, laid out a litany of accusations of “incompetence” and “neglect of duty” by Warren within the 29-page Aug. 4 executive order that suspended the state attorney.
The governor tapped Susan Lopez, a choose within the district, to exchange Warren.
DeSantis’ office stated the lawsuit was anticipated.
“It’s not surprising Warren, who was suspended for refusing to follow the law, would file a legally baseless lawsuit challenging his suspension,” DeSantis spokesperson Taryn Fenske said in a statement to Politico. “We look forward to responding in court.”