As it turns out Florida’s newly shaped Supreme Court will make news one way or another with an upcoming decision on John Morgan’s latest idea to attempt to push through another high-profile Constitutional amendment in Florida. By now you’ve heard of the proposal but before you get worked up here’s what’s happened and what has to happen before this would be a reality in Florida.
What’s already happened? John Morgan has collected 120,000 signatures to replace Florida’s existing minimum law with his plan to phase in a $15 per hour minimum wage.
What’s next? The state Supreme Court will review his proposed language for consideration to be placed as a ballot initiative on the 2020 ballot.
This is the first place to hit the pause button. We’ll have to see how Florida’s Supreme Court rules on the language before knowing whether there will be next steps in the current process. Reporting statewide might have you think it’s a formality but it's not. After the confusing language and bundled Amendments on last year’s ballots, there’s been discussion within the judicial community of more stringently managing the ballot language approved.
Now, let’s say it does move forward, what’s next? Well, Morgan & Co. will have to collect a total of 700,000 signatures to have it placed on the 2020 ballot. If it makes the ballot, it would require 60% support in the 2020 election for it to pass and become law. Furthermore, if it passes in 2020, the minimum wage would rise by $1 per year until it reaches $15 per hour in 2026.
As you can see, there’s a lot that has to happen between here and there. While I’m not one to operate on assumptions without information in hand, 60% for this type of proposal in Florida might be a hill that’s too tall for even Morgan’s money to climb. For the purpose of this initial discussion, I’m not going to wade into why it’s economically a terrible idea. Plus how it would actually hurt those on the lower end of the socio-economic scale the most. However, if/when it makes its way onto the 2020 ballot, I’ll share plenty about how economically illiterate this proposal is for Floridians.
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