No wonder Scott wanted to pack the Court with Amendment 3:
However, the trial court consistently ruled that these documents were relevant as important circumstantial evidence of the claim that Bainter and other political consultants engaged in “a parallel redistricting process” to the open and transparent process championed by the Legislature, which was “conducted in the shadows” in an effort to “subvert the public process” and produce an unconstitutional “partisan map favoring Republicans and incumbents.”You don't say!
You mean politicians do things like that? Mercy!
In conclusion she makes a few good points about why the court system exists in the first place:
Please stick around Judge Pariente!This Court has, for years, held that a “search for truth and justice,” as our court system and our constitution demand, “can be accomplished only when all relevant facts are before the judicial tribunal.” Binger, 401 So. 2d at 1313 (quoting Dodson v. Persell, 390 So. 2d 704, 707 (Fla. 1980)). “Those relevant facts,” this Court has explained, “should be the determining factor rather than gamesmanship, surprise, or superior trial tactics.” Id.
In this case, the trial court repeatedly determined that the non-parties possessed relevant documents that were within the scope of the lawful discovery requests issued by the challengers, as authorized by the Florida Rules of Civil Procedure. Yet, the non-parties defied the trial court’s repeated rulings on relevancy and now seek to prevent the discovery on a basis not raised in the trial court until the day after the trial court held them in contempt of court for their failure to produce the documents. The non-parties’ belated assertions of a qualified First Amendment privilege have, based on the totality of the circumstances, therefore been waived. In addition, their trade secrets claim is wholly devoid of merit.
Accordingly, we affirm the trial court’s ruling requiring production of the 538 pages of disputed documents. For all these reasons, and in accordance with the overriding public interest in openness to judicial proceedings and records, we direct that the sealed portions of the trial transcript, as well as the sealed documents themselves, should be and hereby are ordered unsealed.