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Saturday, January 19, 2019

On December 17th, 2009, James Bain was released from prison after spending 35 years locked up for a crime he did not commit. Previously unexamined DNA evidence definitively proved that he had not kidnapped and raped a 9-year-old boy in 1974. Bain is not the first innocent man to be exonerated by DNA testing — in fact, he is the 12th exoneree since 2001, when Florida passed a statute permitting cases to be reopened for DNA testing — but he might be the last.

Florida is the nationwide leader in wrongful convictions, with 23 death row inmates exonerated since 1973. This dubious honor led the Florida Supreme Court to create the Innocence Commission in 2009, which was ordered “to conduct a comprehensive study of the causes of wrongful conviction and of measures to prevent such convictions.” Given the poor track record of the state’s justice system, it would seem that capital punishment— a contentious moral issue as it is — could benefit from serious reconsideration.

Governor Rick Scott of Florida, however, disagrees. Last month, Scott vetoed the $200,000 earmarked for the commission’s budget — mere pocket change compared to Florida’s $70 billion overall budget. Considering the extremely high cost of the death penalty on Florida taxpayers — around $50 million, according to a Palm Beach Post study twelve years ago — Scott’s decision is obscured by reason or logic. Not to mention the tremendous costs of convicting and imprisoning innocent people, which a study last year in Illinois found to be $214 million for 85 wrongful convictions.

In April of this year, Scott also vetoed a bill intended to help non-violent drug addicts in state prison recover, arguing that “Justice to victims of crime is not served when a criminal is permitted to be released early from a sentence imposed by the courts.” The “victims” Scott refers to are more likely Joe and Jane Taxpayer than actual, physical humans.

Nevertheless, Scott has some powerful statistics to wield. In April, during the whirlwind of Trayvon Martin’s death, he announced Florida’s crime rates were at a 40-year low–a surprising remark confirmed by Politifact. Given the tough-on-crime persona he’s cultivated, Scott seems unlikely to be swayed by such trifles like economics or morality.

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105 responses to “Gov. Rick Scott Vetoes Funds For Wrongful Convictions”

  1. HOTJOEY1956 says:


  2. Executions is what the devil would do in a huiman to another human.

  3. Scott executed David Gore because a newspaper asked him to. He didn’t even know he could sign death warrants until that dognapping boitch Bondi told him to sign them.

  4. rick scott should leave office beacuse he is not doing any good

  5. Rick Scott is a shadow fellon, a discrace to the office of Govenor

  6. Ndysay says:

    Let me get this straight. This guy Rick Scott doesn’t want to find out when people have been wrongly convicted? So, he doesn’t care that somewhere running around free there may be a murderer who is going to get away with the crime. Sounds like someone who doesn’t want to be found out.

  7. mugwort2 says:

    When I read this report I kept thinking the Erroll Morris directed film “Thin Blue Line” How he helped free an innocent man from the death penalty. Unfortunately there is no Erroll Morris or anyone like him in FL. Even if there were he or she’d hands would be full. At least that’s how seems to me since there were at least a dozen proven wrongful convictions. Yet Rick Scott wants to veto the “Innocence Commision” ie DNA testing. I think if Morris’s doc. was made in Fl the wrongly accused Randal Adams would of been executed. How many more Randall Adams need there be before Scott realizes what he did. That is if he’s not hopelessly obstinate on this matter of life and dealth, true justice.

    • Richie T says:

      Scott obviously doesn’t care.

    • frivolous01 says:

      He doesn’t care. Keep in mind that it is only poor people that are on death row, why should he care about poor people, they can’t do anything for him.

      • mugwort2 says:

        I think your reasoning fits the photo ID laws. They are a major discrimination against low income people since its quite difficult for them to obtain such identifications.

      • mugwort2 says:

        He dousn’t care about poor people. Unsure if true in FL most poor people on trial only get a public defender. Usually not the most efficient lawyer. I do apoligise in advance if their are competent public defenders.

        • frivolous01 says:

          In my experience there are not too many good public defenders.

          • mugwort2 says:

            That was precisely my point. Most people charged with capitol murder are poor and they can only obtain public defenders. Not exactly the most efficent, seasoned attorneys in this nation.

  8. DEFINITELY Sounds Like ANOTHER Case of the ‘Peter’s Principle’: ‘People Are Promoted To the Level of Their Incompetence’.

    • daffodilly says:

      You know what…you’re damn right!!! The more we read about the current political scene the more the Peter Principle comes to mind. Maybe the book should be reissued.

    • lazycs says:

      soooo true barak was incompetent as a community organizer

      • Richie T says:

        He’s “a felon” ? How did you come up with that one

      • Sorry, Obama is not Florida”s Governor. Ass—- Scott Is!!!!

      • digoweli says:

        Barak was a traditional politician who believed in negotiation. He is not a warrior and a warrior who won’t give an inch on these rightwing nuts is what we are all waiting for. The rightwing lies about the constitution. They don’t believe in checks and balances but prefer to act like Europeans with a parliament. That’s not the constitution. They blame Barak for being European and then do the parliament European thing themselves. Their economic program is currently the program raping and pillaging Europe. That comes from the Parliamentary system which the Rightwing is pushing. Blaming Barak for what you are doing yourself is called “Gaslighting.” It’s the strategy of the wayward husband.

        • lazycs says:

          Barak is a socialist and even belonged to the party. The right fully embraces the constitution is barak and his minions that have trampled in the past 3 years. From rewriting the countries bankruptcy laws by fiat, to misappropriating stimulus funds and using them to reward his campaign contributors.

          • awakenaustin says:

            You are really OMG under another name. The only thing missing is the use of ‘leftist nutjob.’ You just make stuff up.

          • lazycs says:

            Have you read a paper in the past few days?? Obviously not otherwise you would realize that he was a card carring member

          • awakenaustin says:

            I try to read them. I guess, along with millions of others, I missed that one. Maybe you will enlighten me. Which paper can I read that in?

          • lazycs says:

            washinton Times for 1

      • Joyce says:

        You were there with him so you should know.

      • hilandar1000 says:

        When are you lunatics going to give it up and stop making statements about which you obviously know absolutely nothing? Go see your psychiatrist. Maybe he can help you develop some sense of self worth, so that you won’t feel so diminished in status by the fact that there is a black man in the White House. Have you ever noticed how, regardless of the topic, your paranoia leads you back to the same obsession?

        • lazycs says:

          I see no matter what facts are revealed about barak you can’t let go and ask your messiah the hard questions

          • hilandar1000 says:

            As usual, you have no ‘FACTS’ to back up what you say. Granted, because we, as liberals do keep track of the facts and listen to the political ideas of others, we do not swallow the lies and distortions that manage to keep coming out of the mouths of right-wing lunatics and the puppets that are trying to keep the republican party together.

          • lazycs says:

            Lets do this how about sending me a note when Barak tells the true on ANYTHING…

          • hilandar1000 says:

            Let’s do this. How about you go learn to read, and then read the newspapers for the last 3 or 4 years so that you can discuss specific issues, instead of making wild accusations that you have no way of substantiating.

          • lazycs says:

            much as I thought you can’t find 1 truth, That’s his entire tenure if was easier to tell the truth he would still lie it’s the Chicago way

          • hilandar1000 says:

            Lazy, I am not going to do your homework for you. You were the one who made the ridiculous statement about the lies. Yet you have not named one issue which supportsd that claim. At the same time, you have shown a great deal about yourself. Look at your last sentence above. You have just given the same ridiculous label to all the inhabitants of an entire city. It would be my guess that you do not even know anyone from that city, yet you have labeled every person in that city as a liar. Can you support that claim? If you can’t, then who is the real liar?

          • lazycs says:

            Lets see :
            He wasn’t a Socialist
            He’s not a Mooslim
            He’s the president of all the country
            he values the troops
            he’s a job creator
            Those are just a few quick ones off the top of my head. Case closed

      • runawayslavegirl says:

        He was elected!!!!

      • William Deutschlander says:

        Ignorance is BLISS!

    • William Deutschlander says:

      It has more to do with the Republicrat and Teacrat Party being taken over by thugs, criminals and con artists!

      Example Wisconcin- Scott Walker, his regime of County hoodlums are being convicted of criminal activity, he himself is still under investigation, he has subverted state regulations and the Generational Republicans put him right back in the drivers seat.

      Remember Nixon, his Vice President Agnew, Ensign and on and on!

    • EdC says:

      Self Promotion here, but he still is doing damage to the rest of the state,

  9. It is not a 40 year low on crime when you just switch from street crimes and murders to crimes and murders by the state government.

  10. ExPAVIC says:

    What else is new?

    Rick Scott who was recently a step away from clanging cell doors as the largest medicare cheat in history, is now acting like the typical American Taliban Party Republican.

    And they wonder why the voting public has had it fill of rich, old, sexist, anti-labor, elitist, overly religious, bigoted white guys.

    This is the same group who wants to fool you into voting for Mittens RoMONEY as the next president.

    • William Deutschlander says:

      Unfortunately your reference to the voting public needs clarification.

      The Generational Republican Voter, is going to vote Republican regardless, they are uninformed and do not care what traspires. They comprise nearly one third of all registered voters.

      The other two thirds of registered voters are pretty much equaly divided as Democrat or Independent. If the Repunlican deceit can sway just 18% of the Democrats or Independents to buy their propaganda, the Republicans can have their way, PRETTY SCARRY!

      • lazycs says:

        sorry the dem party is made up entirely of the 47% who don’t pay and federal taxes

        • hilandar1000 says:

          You are expert at one thing — and one thing only — and that is pulling things out of your hat with no basis in reality. Why don’t you go write a book with all your imagined statistics — the other tea partiers will definitely buy it — they will believe anything that fits their fantasies.

          • lazycs says:

            who else would they belong to??? They have an entitlement mentality and so does the Dem party

  11. lazycs says:

    Convicts should be provided the opportunity to have the DNA examined however if it proves them guilty then its execution the very next day let them choose

  12. Richie T says:

    With his kind of attitude, if I lived in Florida, I’d be guilty of a premeditated murder. It’d be worth it for taking him down..

  13. j. sadler says:

    Not only are the innocent inconvenient, Florida leads the way in absurdity. For example Palm Beach has made it illegal to feed the poor and illegal to beg if they are starving. I suspect that time spent on justice must be used to certify phoney election returns. I try to keep lite hearted about these nasty terrors but every now and then it gets me upset. I know the answer. Budget cuts will fix it all. We need judges with lower pay scales and less food for our convicts. And if we execute them really quickly after arrest nobody will whine about them being innocent. Besides the innocent get so upset when they have the key thrown away or the lethal injection right at hand. They are fun to watch.

  14. Travis says:

    i tell you the truth. All these people like him need morals. Money cant buy you everything have some respect and pride in what you do be honest. Being evil won’t get you no where. Shame that all these world leaders are now so corrupt.

  15. Winsome Gilzene says:

    Not that he dont care about the unfortunate innocences wrongly convicted but also people with disability and the old retirees veterans .He is taking their money like he did some years ago then come to Florida by night to repeat the same again.Its funny how people have such a short memory that could be elected Govonor .He change every thing to suit the rich and forget the poor.

  16. digoweli says:

    Years ago I vacationed at Disneyworld. Florida was always a magical place. But I won’t vacation again there until the gun madness and these crazy folks are gone. They can spend their own money but I won’t spend my money in Florida.
    Ray Evans Harrell

  17. Franco III says:

    Our legal system is not perfect, so a few mistakes will be made…!!! Think for a moment of the thousands or millions of criminals who have not been caught, will never be caught, and all the future criminals who will be commiting crimes in the future…!

    • frivolous01 says:

      Are you seriously saying that it is ok to execute innocent people because ‘a few mistakes will be made’???

      • George says:

        I would rather see 1,000 guilty remain free than see even one innocent man executed. I can’t even imagine the rage I would feel if I were to be convicted of a crime I didn’t commit, especially one for which I would be executed!


  19. It_Does_Matter says:

    We should strive as a just and compassionate people to narrow the gap between justice and the law.

  20. tobewan says:

    Why is Gov. Scott allowed to Obstruct Justice? And to use his privileged power to hinder the carrying out of Justice? And that leads to, Who is he protecting?

  21. Joyce says:

    Yes, this is what you get when you vote for a nut case.

  22. rockin_the_bay_in_Tampa says:

    Another GOP governor that “bought” his way into the governor’s mansion. He is crookeder than 7 Hells…I am a resident of FL and I am NOT happy with him at all! Still, it goes to show you what m-o-n-e-y can buy…

  23. carolknows says:

    idiots like rick scott as governor makes my retirement decisions easy..florida off the list..isn’t an example of decency by any stretchof the imagination…scott is crooked as h*ll /continues his crazy voting purge even if illegal/continues his war on womens’ rights/should be in jail himself for fraud and bilking government funds..what a state huh?

    • CAThinker says:

      That’s it! See my note about a tourist advisory newsletter – it can be expanded to be a retirement advisory too. Starve these idiots of tourist dollars and sales taxes…

  24. rockin_the_bay_in_Tampa says:

    He is protecting his own butt. The entire state house in Florida is run by the GOP…need I say more? He, basically gets what he wants just like “W” did when he had all of Congress at his beck and call.

  25. I am appalled at how many people were wrongfully imprisoned in the “Great state of Florida” this is an outrage, and why aren’t these police and judges taking off their duties for imprisoning the wrong guys in the first place? At the very least we should be looking into why there are so many of these wrongful imprisonments. If Florida is a leader in wrongful convictions, why is the Governor even allowed to veto a bill that is so damn important, and what is he trying to hide? I do understand the power of a governor and the way a law and a bill is passed. I am just saying this type of narcisstic behavouir is why we are in the mess we are in today! Yet people keep voting these idiots right back into office, and watch if Romney gets in, just wait and see what will happen to the United States then. That idiot, is going to lose, all the respect any country still has for us!

  26. digoweli says:

    Boycott Florida. The state is obviously unsafe for sensible people who don’t carry a gun or who might be the wrong color for the police. It’s become an old fashioned southern state of the pre-civil rights version. Boycott Florida.

    • CAThinker says:

      There’s a grand idea – I like it! Non-violent, truly free-market and hits the rich guys where it really hurts – in their bank accounts… We need a campaign to boycott all of these backward states – that way, they only rob their residents. Maybe start a newsletter with advisories similar to what the State department does for uncooperative countries… Starve them of tourist dollars and see what happens… (you heard it here first…)

  27. Bigspender says:

    Next on Rick Scott’s agend… Florida has drafted an amendment to secede from the union.

  28. Rhonda says:

    Typical Republican! Scott does not care whose life is ruined by his policies and does not care about justic or human rights only his own appeaance to the people he hopes will vote for him or the next Republican clone who comes behind him. He is no different from Rick Perry who said he did not feel bad about executing an innocent person. Human rights are not a strong suit for conservatives. But yet they call themselves Christians.

  29. Rhonda says:

    Maybe so, but he is an excellent president!

  30. runawayslavegirl says:

    these individuals do not look like rick scott!!!!

  31. Rhonda says:

    Maybe he was not the best community organizer because he felt it was important that the people “own” the process of bettering themselves. But he’s a great president who is doing exactly what he said he would do in spite of the Teaparties trying to drag him down into the pit of hell with them.

  32. Rhonda says:

    Well, they also elected George W. Bush President by messing up the ballots. Florida politics are as crooked as Louisiana’s .

  33. Rhonda says:

    He’s allowed to obstruct justice because they keep electing Republicans in spite of what they do. I mean they actually swung the election of George W. Bush and, as a result we got a messy war and a screwed up economy. Now that there is another election, they still haven’t said they are sorry. They just blissfully ignore that 8 year boondoggle.

  34. Rhonda says:

    Where and how? And he doesn’t even cheat on his wife! Get over yourself. Bin Laden is dead. The soldiers are home from Iraq. GM is hiring. Now I will add another one. Al-Qaida has nightmares about the next drone! (or Navy Seal knocking on their door complete with a toothsome dog.). He is doing the best job he can to fix the crap Reagan and Bush did and conducting a war without killing a lot of Americans in the process.

  35. Rhonda says:

    Oh but Republicans can’t endorse contraception. Might upset one of their biggest donors, the corrupt Catholic church.

    • CAThinker says:

      The irony – the only “life” the “state” is interested in protecting are the unborn ones… Apparently, once birth occurs, everyone is on their own, wrongfully-accused-innocent or not…

  36. Rhonda says:

    There are some but apparently not in Texas, Florida, or Louisiana. Georgia has some good ones, especially in Atlanta and they rarely use the death penalty in Metro Atlanta.

  37. Ford Truck says:

    The English jurist William Blackstone stated that its “Better that ten guilty persons escape, than that one innocent suffer.” Benjamin Franklin carried it farther and said “It is better a hundred guilty persons should go free than one innocent person should suffer.”

    Clearly Gov Scott would rather have an unknown number of innocent people imprisoned, or even executed, to make sure someone….. anyone…. is punished for a crime.

    This thought is irrational and foolish! Not only is imprisoning an innocent person for a crime someone else committed cruel and un-American, when an innocent person is imprisoned, all investigations into that crime cease and the real criminal is never punished.

    Seems to me that when a governor or politician tries to end investigations that may prove innocent people are imprisoned and possibly, innocent people have been executed, its a clear indication that they KNOW errors will be found that would embarrass the legal system which they are a part of.

    • DurdyDawg says:

      Now you got it! That’s exactly the reason.. You can witness that each time a case comes up in that manner.. Regardless of what evidence is now presented, the D.A. still stands on the original verdict and there’s no changing his mind even if their released.

  38. Ed says:

    Morality? What the *%#$@ is that? Republicans only know about morality swhen it comes to abortions.

  39. Gary Beene says:

    Why Is Rick Scott Acting Like He Doesn’t Know Want To Know If He Executed Innocent Men?
    Answer: Most men on death row are black…duh!!!

    • DurdyDawg says:

      Color doesn’t have anything to do with the question Gary.. The truth is, he would ignore his morality regardless who was innocently executed, after all.. He wasn’t the one who convicted them so he shouldn’t over-ride twelve jurists’ decision (even if it was determined on flimsy evidence). By doing so would churn up that idiotic excuse that he no longer trusts his subordinates value.

  40. Betosr says:

    This is not supprising, the supprising thing about all this, is that many many people will agree with him. He will not be voted out, there are to many deranged people that will take his side. So don’t just blame Mr Scott, Florida have themselves to blame also. This isn’t the only state that this occurs. I trully believe that more states are there too. Maybe not to the same extent but non-the-less they too have MURDERED innocent people. I live in Texas, how many people have we excuted that were innocent? Something has to be done to resolve this issue. Enough money has to be alocated for this very important issue. The people that are put to death are proably the poor and minority’s. Correct me if I’m wrtong!

    • DurdyDawg says:

      Oh, your right okay.. Comes to mind the criminal case of Cullen Davis and his exoneration.. Was it wealth, luck or lack of evidence that got him out of a murder charge? No one has ever been charged since his verdict came back, not guilty. And it’s not really the rich who get off but how much you can afford to pay your lawyer(s). Imagine being told, “I got you 14 months and three years probation but for ten grand more I can get you off completely”.. Now THAT’S criminal!!

  41. runawayslavegirl says:

    I will not take my grandchildren to Florida.. We will go to New York and check out the statue of Liberty and Coney Island.

  42. runawayslavegirl says:

    Prove it please, you republicans are pathological liars!!!!

  43. Who elected this immoral man? I believe that someone, somewhere in Florida, has deep enough pockets to cover the expenses of this valuable program! Why do innocent people have to die?
    Hasn’t there been enough proof of DNA testing to convince this “man” of its’ value?
    Oh. I forgot. He’s a Republican. ‘Nuff said there I guess..

  44. truevoice4real says:

    Republicans hate the American people….

    • DurdyDawg says:

      Not really.. They just want all the power and wealth, who they have to mow down in order to attain it is (to them) inconsequential and since their not in Europe or Asia then the only one’s TO pick on is U.S. citizens.. They don’t hate us, they just want to keep us ignorant enough to continue pumping in that moola.

  45. I am a death penalty opponent, however, if I did believe in it; I would not want to see an innocent person die. I hope Gov Scott will find it in his heart to use every means available to seek the truth in these death penalty cases. We pride ourselves on democracy, christianity and fairness in these United States of America so please, let us show this spirit on this issue. I would just like to appeal to Gov Scott to project yourself on the other end of the spectrum (you were an innocent person falsely accused) and yet you were being denied every means to prove your innocence. How would you feel about that? It is my prayer that God will touch your heart to do the right thing.

  46. I believe this article could be a specific description of the political landscape in Texas, also. Just switch out a couple of names (the current govenor, and any one of dozens of wrongfully convicted prison inmates who have been exonerated of any wrong-doing). Just be careful of plagerism, lol.

    This issue in Florida, is somewhat like a drop in the bucket, compared to the Texas’ fiasco!

    Alas, I have not done my homework regarding the means by which conviction cases come up for review and re-assessment, in Texas.

    Thank you, “The National Memo,” for setting forth in the spotlight, low-key, yet lucid, and poignant mis-appropriations of “conservative zeal,” up and down the line, in local and State governance. Surely, your voice should be heard, and considered, and acted upon, as the current elections are fast approaching.

    Every “TNM” commentary I have read, has had an equitable ring to it, yet justs quietly blasts away at all the inequitable events in the political and governmental arena. We are not talking about knock down, drag out fights at election time. We are talking about the eventual replacing of rhetoric with the steady, everyday manifestation of a good, sound, robust, yet still diverse society, which can thrive, at All levels.

  47. Scott, why you have to cheat with your purg, God got this!

  48. John says:

    this is a shame before our god white man has has turned humanity to a treagdy i don’t believe nothing they say there curupt decieving even themselves in the bible talks about the serpent how he scams in words and tricki he can be everything thats bad about politics comes from he republicans we know who they are satans right hand man history shows that devil works in them

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