Law-Abiding Floridians: Judge Zabel Violated the Law; Attacked Democracy; Denied Voters’ Rights
By Dr. Judy Meissner
MIAMI, FL (January 5, 2015) We’re all taught to play by the rules. In a civil society, we rely on rules and procedures and laws as we go about our daily routine. When people break the rules, they’re expected to be held accountable for their actions — whether it’s within your family, on the job or at school, or in our society as a whole.
Miam-Dade Circuit Court Judge Sarah Zabel is no exception. There are rights, doctrines, and principles in the Florida Constitution, in Florida statutes and in the Rules of Judicial Conduct that set out the right way for judges to decide cases and issue rulings.
Judge Zabel totally missed that point in her July 25, 2014 decision overthrowing Florida’s Constitution and overturning a constitutionally-sanctioned election. She arrogantly disregarded US Supreme Court precedent in U.S. v. Windsor that holds that Marriage is not an issue of Constitutional law, but a public policy issue states have the right to decide.
Article II, Section 3 of the Florida Constitution expressly prohibits judges from enacting laws, stating that “the powers of the state government shall be divided into legislative, executive and judicial branches. No person belonging to one branch shall exercise any powers appertaining to either of the other branches unless expressly provided herein.”
The Florida Supreme Court has interpreted the “separation of powers” requirement to prohibit both encroachment by any one branch on the powers held by another, and delegation by any branch of its powers.
Judicial independence does not exempt Judge Zabel from obeying the Constitution from which she gets her very authority as a judge. Nor does it exempt her from complying with the provisions of the Florida Code of Judicial Conduct (CJC).
Judge Zabel’s decision corruptly violated not only the Florida Constitution’s separation of powers, but also the CJC. She acted in violation of her oath, duties and role as a member of the Judiciary. She engaged in conduct demonstrating her unfitness to hold judicial office.
Respect for constitutional government, the protection of the voter rights, the integrity of the judiciary, and the public safety and welfare of the people of Florida warrant Judge Zabel be disciplined by the Florida Judicial Qualifications Commission and removed from office. She also deserves to be disbarred by the Florida Bar.
Close to 8 million Floridians cast their ballots in 2008 on constitutional amendment 2 defining Marriage as the union of a husband and a wife. If Judge Zabel disagrees with Florida’s voter-approved Constitution, she can change it the same everyone else can: by persuading our legislators to adopt new legislation or place the issue on the ballot, or by gathering the required number of signatures and letting Florida voters decide in a democratic election.
Zabel chose to overthrow the Constitution, overturn an election, circumvent the rules, and unlawfully deny Florida voters their civil rights. Justice demands that everyone be accountable for their actions, even members of the judiciary, like Judge Zabel. Justice delayed is justice denied. Zabel must go!
*** Judy Meissner, Ph.D., MPH, is an Israeli Professor of psychology, a public health and social welfare expert and an international human rights advocate. She is a director of the International Center for the Study of Aberrosexualism (ICSA), an organization of mental health professionals dedicated to the research of biologically aberrant sexual behavior and practices, or aberrosexualism, and other psico-sexual phenomema. You can contact her at firstname.lastname@example.org