Last week, while the Florida GOP was busy walking out on their jobs early without passing a budget and sticking it to the working poor on Medicaid expansion, Rick Scott suffered another defeat from a judge.
During his reelection campaign last September, Scott went to a California court in an attempt to keep his private emails from going public. He wanted to quash a request by attorney Steven R. Andrews to determine if Scott was using private email for state business, something prohibited by Florida public records laws.
While all eyes were on the GOP meltdown in the legislature last week, the judge ordered Google to turn over the data on Scott's private email account going back to January 2011:
Santa Clara County Superior Court Judge Mary E. Arand ruled that the governor's attempt to quash a request by Tallahassee lawyer Steven R. Andrews was not valid.
"The subscriber information and IP addresses will assist Andrews in determining whether a public official created the accounts, which, in turn, could establish that official agency business may have been transacted from those accounts,'' Arand wrote in a four-page ruling filed on the court website.
Andrews wants the computer company to give him the subscriber identities and IP addresses to help prove his claim that the governor attempted to use the firstname.lastname@example.org account to shield communications from the state's public records laws. When the governor refused to turn over information about the accounts last year, Andrews got a Tallahassee court to approve a subpoena to seek the information from Google. Circuit Court Judge Charles A. Francis also ordered the governor to stop fighting the request.
In September, the governor filed a lawsuit in a Santa Clara County court to prevent Google from releasing information on when the private Gmail accounts used by Scott and two aides were created.
Andrews is also seeking information for the Gmail accounts of Sarah Hansford, the former assistant to First Lady Ann Scott, and Brad Piepenbrink, the governor's former travel aide and now deputy chief of staff.
Unfortunately, his plan to keep those emails out of public view prior to his election, which was the whole point, paid off.
Scott no longer feels the need for accountability to voters since he was (barely) reelected.
However, it could interfere with his reported ambitions for higher office.
Just add it to the list.