Drug-testing of welfare applicants violates Constitution

Today, a three-judge panel of the 11th Circuit Court of Appeals voted unanimously to bar the state of Florida from forcing welfare applicants to undergo drug testing.

As the judges found:

“… the State failed to offer any factual support or to present any empirical evidence of a “concrete danger” of illegal drug use within Florida’s TANF population. The evidence in this record does not suggest that the population of TANF recipients engages in illegal drug use or that they misappropriate government funds for drugs at the expense of their own and their children’s basic subsistence. The State has presented no evidence that simply because an applicant for TANF benefits is having financial problems, he is also drug-addicted or prone to fraudulent and neglectful behavior.”

Exactly right. The state failed to offer “any factual support or to present any empirical evidence,” because no such evidence exists. As the judges went on to note, “there is nothing inherent to the condition of being impoverished that supports the conclusion that there is a “concrete danger” that impoverished individuals are prone to drug use.”

Nothing, that is, except deeply cherished stereotypes and a penchant for bashing poor people.

The bill creating the mandatory drug-testing provision comes out of the conservative American Legislative Exchange Council, or ALEC. Last year, the Georgia General Assembly passed a similar bill, which Gov. Nathan Deal signed even though the Florida law had already been suspended by a federal district court judge. In fact, the Georgia law was so blatantly unconstitutional — and such a clear case of showboating and scapegoating — that Deal himself “suspended” its enforcement until the courts could rule on the matter.

Such laws are motivated by a cruel desire to bash and denigrate the poor, without regard to evidence or civil rights. If legislators had been truly concerned about the wise use of tax dollars, they could have mandated that HOPE scholarship recipients be drug-tested before receiving benefits, or that corporate CEOs be drug-tested before their companies could be eligible for major economic-development packages. The same logic would have applied.

But of course such thoughts never entered their minds.

– Jay Bookman

629 comments Add your comment

F. Sinkwich

February 26th, 2013
2:52 pm

“inconvenience and stigmatization” = deterrence

Got it?

stands for decibels - I got your "triangulation" right here

February 26th, 2013
2:53 pm

Oh, and so is the 22nd. That one ought to be repealed tootie sweet, as the frenchies like to say.

williebkind

February 26th, 2013
2:53 pm

Aquagirl

“And you know where that microchip is going, it ain’t your arm.”

My imagination is not as acute as yours but really tell me? Where does it go?

stands for decibels - I got your "triangulation" right here

February 26th, 2013
2:54 pm

“inconvenience and stigmatization” = deterrence

Got it?

because we need to deter people (and their kids) from benefits they’re legally entitled to.
Because freedom and liberty, or something.

Jefferson

February 26th, 2013
2:54 pm

Are you folks just still brainwashed by President Reagan that the gov’t is the enemy? Do you think somehow you will not have to pay taxes ? Grow up, life is not a box of chocolates.

Redcoat

February 26th, 2013
2:54 pm

Granny Godzilla ……..He said he was going to change all that when he was elected…..what happened?

Tom( Viet Vet-USAF)

February 26th, 2013
2:55 pm

Partisay – Very nicely put, “receiving benefits”, spoken like a true liberal. I know you don’t feel you should earn what you obtain in life, just let the govt provide it for me. I still believe in no work, no pay! But that is old school 50’s and 60’s era!

williebkind

February 26th, 2013
2:55 pm

GG almost human. Now my imagination is corrupted.

Granny Godzilla

February 26th, 2013
2:55 pm

dcoat

February 26th, 2013
2:52 pm

Do Liberals/Democrats think it is a problem that drug abusers are using welfare funds for illegal drugs? What solutions do you have to offer?………..
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Why re-invent the wheel for poor folks?

Use the same method they use for rich folks.

Aquagirl

February 26th, 2013
2:55 pm

why are you willing to tolerate even 1-3% of welfare recipients (which is almost certainly a very likely low number) using drugs illegally?

For the same reason we’re not willing to tolerate wholesale search and seizure in any situation. Drug tests are searches, if you can’t show a compelling interest or reason to search people, then you can’t search them.

BTW, crying about parasites and your precious, precious wallet are not compelling interests, it’s just whining. If your world revolves around such dumb programmed into your head, that’s your fault.

You do not have a constitutional right to demand searches of others based on your pet obsession. Get over yourself.

liberal hack

February 26th, 2013
2:56 pm

Granny Godzilla,

If you honestly believe a tax code written by or influenced by those who are mega wealthy is going to take more money from their wallets and bank accounts then you have truly gone off the rocker.

Partisay

February 26th, 2013
2:57 pm

Sinkwich…just wondering if you still believe that a single mother with a kid that gets laid off her job, is drawing unemployment until she finds another job but discovers she can’t feed herself AND her kid on umemployment alone so she gets food stamps to temporarily help out….should she be “inconvenienced” and “stigmatized”?

If so…how much inconvenienced? Do you mean waiting in line for a few hours? Or how about stigmatized? How so? Do you mean people should wait outside and holler MOOCHER!! at her as she comes out the door? Or be made to put a sticker on her car that identifies her as a moocher? Or be made to wear a scarlette “M”? Tell us, what is your defintion of inconvenienced and stigmatized. Very curious.

Joe Hussein Mama

February 26th, 2013
2:57 pm

Theophilus — “Then why all of the uproar over drug testing of welfare recipients?”

Nice failpivot into a Goalpost Move. We were talking about anecdotal claims of welfare fraud and now your objection is that the *courts* won’t permit whiz-quizzes for recipients of TANF and similar programs. If you’ve got an objection to the latter, I’m afraid you’re going to have to take it up with the courts.

As regards SNAP users at the fine food stores, maybe some of y’all could use your iPhones and dashboard cams to collect some evidence. Be sure to follow the ‘offenders’ home so we can see what sort of housing they live in.

“Athletes are tested for drugs routinely now because it has been shown that SOME of them have cheated.”

Your argument got used in the case Jay cited. You can find the refutation of that argument in the decision.

“How many “documented” instances of drug use by welfare recipients would be enough for you, Jay and other liberals to agree they should be tested?”

Once again, we were talking about ostensibly fraudulent use of *SNAP* benefits, not the drug question atop this thread. Please keep the two matters straight.

Granny Godzilla

February 26th, 2013
2:58 pm

Redcoat

February 26th, 2013
2:54 pm

Granny Godzilla ……..He said he was going to change all that when he was elected…..what happened?
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Perhaps you should include in your post exactly what he said….

I hate wasting time on y’all’s rabbit holes.

getalife

February 26th, 2013
2:58 pm

The speaker is right, our President is destroying the gop.

stands for decibels - I got your "triangulation" right here

February 26th, 2013
2:59 pm

sfd, yea, your right they are, but I don’t see to many Republicans pushing for drug legalization, that honor belongs to Democrats

That really so? Did elected Democrats spearhead the legalization efforts in WA and CO in 2012? I honestly don’t know; I figured it was more outside-the-political-mainstream than that.

Joe Hussein Mama

February 26th, 2013
2:59 pm

Redcoat — “Do Liberals/Democrats think it is a problem that drug abusers are using welfare funds for illegal drugs?”

Evidence, please?

liberal hack

February 26th, 2013
2:59 pm

Democrats use the poor/ lower middle class as political pawns just like the Republicans use social issues on those who care about them as political pawns.

Democrats give a flying flip about the poor. it’s just another wedge issue to scalp the American people out of tax revenue

getalife

February 26th, 2013
3:00 pm

When your kids can’t get a decent job to leave your house, who are you going to blame?

Granny Godzilla

February 26th, 2013
3:01 pm

liberal hack

February 26th, 2013
2:56 pm

Granny Godzilla,

If you honestly believe a tax code written by or influenced by those who are mega wealthy is going to take more money from their wallets and bank accounts then you have truly gone off the rocker.
.
.
.
first I use a glider not a rocker

second what does the above hot mess have to do with what you posted previously?

liberal hack

February 26th, 2013
3:01 pm

std, signed into law by Democrat governors. And Medical marijuana was passed in liberal run states too.

Partisay

February 26th, 2013
3:02 pm

Tom – I know you don’t feel you should earn what you obtain in life, just let the govt provide it for me.

Ummm..no you really don’t know what I feel and what I believe. Look at my post to Sinkwich at 2:57. So the mother and her child get nothing if you are in charge? Just too damn bad for her?

Redcoat

February 26th, 2013
3:02 pm

Granny Godzilla………..Why re-invent the wheel for poor folks? Use the same method they use for rich folks.

But they do and they still qualify for government assistance once they are out again……and the cycle continues……..same with the rich folks except they use their own money

Bill C

February 26th, 2013
3:02 pm

Joe Hussein Mama

What on earth are you talking about? Please go back and read my original post on page 3. I don’t care about this whole flipping thing, I just wanted to point out that the writer, Joe, made some pretty bad comparisons in his original article.

I don’t think I ever once strayed from my original stance which at its simplest form is: that whether through money or barter, you can obtain drugs from someone else and you also receive welfare to cover the things you need, because you did not use your money/barter system to obtains your needs, then IMO you are abusing the system.

I’m also aware how addictions work and why someone would rather barter for drugs than food. There in lies the underlying issue in this whole mess, the powers and fall outs of addiction. I don’t want to get into the millions of problems about addiction or how as a society we can fix them, because I don’t care and there is not enough time in the day to debate that topic. I am also certainly not going down town to get a drug dealers opinion on the matter.

liberal hack

February 26th, 2013
3:03 pm

I’m saying it’s immoral to tax “millionaires at 39.6% plus the .9% Medicare surtax as well

alex

February 26th, 2013
3:03 pm

@ Redcoat, the bonus idea IS interesting…creative!
@ Downinalbany, intuitively, I agree with you, but our intuition is frequently wrong and that is why we need data (if available), and the data ain’t great…
@ Joe, the return on investment of this testing was poor, furthermore it was not greater than the non-recepients , Have to worry about false positives and then confirmation testing, can you just imagine the cost od blood tests and f/u, excetera…

Theophilus

February 26th, 2013
3:03 pm

“What is it, precisely, that makes drug use so overarchingly important to you and our other conservative friends?”

I have know people who have overdosed on them or had their lives ruined by them. That is why such drugs are illegal. Even if pot is legalized, it is doubtful cocaine and harder drugs would be. Are you saying it is okay for the FLOTUS to revamp school lunches and for Bloomberg in NYC to ban large sodas but not okay to criminalize drug use?

“If a welfare recipient is watching a ballgame on TV with some friends and partakes of a joint passed his way, what exactly about that is so repugnant? Is it that he might have *purchased* the dope or simply that he used it at all?”

That he might have purchased it with welfare money. I see you use pot as your example (rather than harder drugs). Why is that? In any case, you are talking with someone who smoked pot for 5 years as a teenager and knows how its regular use can effect people.

“What, exactly, is the foundation of the moral obloquy you seem to want to pile on the guy?”

Drugs do not generally help people. Exercise, a good diet, social support, a strong work ethic and integrity usually do. If he is not on welfare, I care but not as much. It violates my conscience to give money to street people who use it simply to by alcohol. That is why I don;t give them money, but instead buy them food if they want it. Likewise it bothers me to be forced at the point of a gun to give money to people who are going to spend it on drugs. Make sense?

Rockerbabe

February 26th, 2013
3:03 pm

I say, drug test all elected officials in the state government! There has to be some reason for the nonsense that these folks engage in every year!

Uh Huh.......What next?....Drug Test Seniors, Veterans?

February 26th, 2013
3:04 pm

I know some seniors who are using and buying such drugs

like Lortabs and it ain’t for an ailment.

So If they test one GROUP they need to test all who are

getting assistance.

Uh Huh

Oscar

February 26th, 2013
3:04 pm

hack – is it also illegal and fattening.

Redcoat

February 26th, 2013
3:05 pm

Joe Mama……do you think there is a problem or not? evidence?….

I dropped my fried twinkie

February 26th, 2013
3:05 pm

What a crock………..Free food so they can afford their drugs is just WRONG.

Oscar

February 26th, 2013
3:05 pm

I say test all elected officials and if they are not on drugs, give them some. They need drugs.

getalife

February 26th, 2013
3:06 pm

The beatings will continue until the gop surrenders.

liberal hack

February 26th, 2013
3:06 pm

Granny, I’m also saying that the tax code is written in such a way that good tax lawyers and accountants find loop holes we don’t have access too, they will always be there, you’re crazy if you think all of them will be eliminated. Also you are also not thinking straight if you think a person who earns a million a year is willing going to allow 300,000 to go to the gov’t w/o finding some way to reduce that amount…

Serenity Now

February 26th, 2013
3:07 pm

“Under the U.S. Constitution, it is something else entirely when the government requires it. It is a clear violation of the Fourth Amendment prohibition against warrantless searches and seizures.”

Nice try. This argument would have much more merit if there were Constitutional guarantees of an EBT card.

Welcome to the Occupation

February 26th, 2013
3:08 pm

Redcoat: “Do Liberals/Democrats think it is a problem that drug abusers are using welfare funds for illegal drugs? What solutions do you have to offer?………..”

Nope. I sure don’t. (Now keep in mind, I’m not a liberal.)

What solutions?

Smash capitalism.

Granny Godzilla

February 26th, 2013
3:08 pm

Redcoat

February 26th, 2013
3:02 pm

Granny Godzilla………..Why re-invent the wheel for poor folks? Use the same method they use for rich folks.

But they do and they still qualify for government assistance once they are out again……and the cycle continues……..same with the rich folks except they use their own money
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So the poor and the rich both have folks who have drug issues.

Well there’s news.

TaxPayer

February 26th, 2013
3:08 pm

We need a con tax.

Get Real

February 26th, 2013
3:09 pm

Spare me the liberal drivel Jay, I read what you said and totally disagree. I had to be drug tested to be employed and I am also subject to random screenings. Why should someone receiving free money not be subject to the same guidelines??

Evidence is not required for my pre-employment drug screening, it is required if I want to be employed; the same applies for the random checks……

Joe Hussein Mama

February 26th, 2013
3:10 pm

Bill C — “Joe Hussein Mama What on earth are you talking about? Please go back and read my original post on page 3. I don’t care about this whole flipping thing, I just wanted to point out that the writer, Joe, made some pretty bad comparisons in his original article.”

I reread your comment. I’m not quite sure how to reconcile it with this comment you made on Page 4:

if you are on welfare and abuse drugs (aka are addicted) then I have to presume it is highly likely you spend your benefits on essential items and hoard the rest of your money to buy drugs

Granny Godzilla

February 26th, 2013
3:10 pm

liberal hack

February 26th, 2013
3:06 pm

Granny, I’m also saying that the tax code is written in such a way that good tax lawyers and accountants find loop holes we don’t have access too, they will always be there, you’re crazy if you think all of them will be eliminated. Also you are also not thinking straight if you think a person who earns a million a year is willing going to allow 300,000 to go to the gov’t w/o finding some way to reduce that amount…
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What happened to that slavery stuff from the first post?

Where’d that go?

getalife

February 26th, 2013
3:10 pm

Stay the course on attacking the poor while ignoring your trillion dollar welfare for your friends.

Aquagirl

February 26th, 2013
3:10 pm

My imagination is not as acute as yours but really tell me? Where does it go?

I’m not going on imagination only….According to sworn testimony presented at our State Capitol, those microchips are placed in the “vaginal-rectum area.”

What a fine moment under the Gold Dome. Thanks, Republicans.

http://blogs.ajc.com/political-insider-jim-galloway/2010/04/19/delusions-the-legislature-and-an-implanted-microchip/

williebkind

February 26th, 2013
3:11 pm

“I’m saying it’s immoral to tax “millionaires at 39.6% plus the .9% Medicare surtax as well”

I agree! But I also think it is immoral to pay someone millions of dollars in wages. The CEO’s, republican and demwits, think they are really worth that kind of money. Exception is a business owner. If a company can justify paying the CEO millions then that company should have minimum wage of $20 per hr.

stands for decibels - I got your "triangulation" right here

February 26th, 2013
3:11 pm

std, signed into law by Democrat governors.

erm, no, in WA and CO, the two states I inquired about, the laws were passed by referenda.

stands for decibels - I got your "triangulation" right here

February 26th, 2013
3:12 pm

(not that I have a problem with Dems spearheading rational drug policy. I just don’t think that they DID, is all.)

Granny Godzilla

February 26th, 2013
3:13 pm

Over and over and over they whine…

“Why should someone receiving free money not be subject to the same guidelines?? ”

.
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Mostly because an appeals court has said so based on their judgement of the meaning of the
constitution.

Got democracy?

Do you like it?

Jay

February 26th, 2013
3:13 pm

“Evidence is not required for my pre-employment drug screening, it is required if I want to be employed; the same applies for the random checks……

Again, Get Real, what you and your employer agree upon in a private commercial transaction between the two of you is between the two of you.

But when government requires such a warrantless search of its citizens, it is a clear, blatant violation of the Fourth Amendment. It’s odd how suddenly, on this issue, conservatives recognize no constitutional limit on what government can do.

GT

February 26th, 2013
3:13 pm

One more thing that legalizing the stuff would make things better. Why waste good money having to buy something only expensive because it has been outlawed by the government that pays for it. Why not legalize it and count the savings towards our cut backs?

stands for decibels - I got your "triangulation" right here

February 26th, 2013
3:14 pm

whoa… dudes…

I just tried to copy/paste a comment and I got…

“See more at: http://blogs.ajc.com/jay-bookman-blog/2013/02/26/drug-testing-of-welfare-applicants-violates-constitution/?cp=5#comment-1244031

is it those drugs that My Type are supposedly gobbling like there’s no tomorrow, or are other people getting that as well?

JohnnyReb

February 26th, 2013
3:14 pm

I can tell many of you have no idea what it takes to earn enough to be taxed at 39.6%.

Redcoat

February 26th, 2013
3:15 pm

Granny Godzilla ………

Candidate Obama pledged he would never take money from outside organizations working on his behalf. According to this new kind of politician, who announced his presidential run in Honest Abe’s hometown of Springfield, Ill., in early 2007, “as people have looked away in disillusionment and frustration, we know what’s filled the void. The cynics, and the lobbyists, and the special interests who’ve turned our government into a game only they can afford to play.”

Obama complained, “They write the checks and you get stuck with the bills. They get the access while you get to write a letter. They think they own this government, but we’re here today to take it back.”

Yeah Right…………..

stands for decibels - I got your "triangulation" right here

February 26th, 2013
3:17 pm

who announced his presidential run in Honest Abe’s hometown of Springfield, Ill., in early 2007

about three years before a certain case was decided that changed all that.

JohnnyReb

February 26th, 2013
3:18 pm

Jay @ 3:13. The Feds dictate which businesses will have a drug testing program in place. Aviation and big boy trucking are widely known to have drug testing programs. The 4th was set-aside for this; it could be set-aside for welfare recipiants as well. All it would take is enough backing to believe it the right thing to do. Obviously, that amount of backing is not there.

Tom( Viet Vet-USAF)

February 26th, 2013
3:19 pm

Partisay – I have no problem with my hard-earned retired taxpayer’s money going to someone who needs help for a short period of time to get back on their feet. What I object to is establishing a way of life by getting undeserved “benefits” from the govt in what seems like forever. Then somehow they end up as a Democratic voter, wonder why? Perhaps just a thought, make it difficult or discourage by say(requiring job training, drug testing, being a citizen, things like that) to receive assistance not “benefits” from the govt. It seems like you libs somehow forget when you say govt money, you are not referring it as taxpayers money!

stands for decibels - I got your "triangulation" right here

February 26th, 2013
3:19 pm

many of you have no idea what it takes to earn enough to be taxed at 39.6%

That’d be a dollar above 450K/year.

What do I win?

weetamoe

February 26th, 2013
3:19 pm

Just set up free drug dispensaries next to soup kitchens. Maybe give vouchers for those who have kids to get their kids immunizations as a bonus. Throw in a TB test as well. CEO’s should buy their own stuff, though.

Finn McCool (The System isn't Broken; It's Fixed)

February 26th, 2013
3:20 pm

Conservatives are soooooo embarrassing to the human race.

JohnnyReb

February 26th, 2013
3:20 pm

stands – the smart ass award

Joe Hussein Mama

February 26th, 2013
3:20 pm

Theosophilus — “I have know people who have overdosed on them or had their lives ruined by them. That is why such drugs are illegal.”

I know why drugs are illegal. That’s not what I asked you.

“Even if pot is legalized, it is doubtful cocaine and harder drugs would be.”

Once again, that’s not what I asked you.

“Are you saying it is okay for the FLOTUS to revamp school lunches and for Bloomberg in NYC to ban large sodas but not okay to criminalize drug use?”

What a pathetically ridiculous question. Firstly, I haven’t made any comment on the FLOTUS and secondly, what she’s doing is beside the point. Thirdly, drug use is *already* criminalized, in case you hadn’t noticed. And once again, you still haven’t answered the direct question I put to you. Do you need to have it repeated?

“That he might have purchased it with welfare money.”

And what if he *didn’t* purchase it with money at all? What if it was shared with him? What if he bartered or traded for it, thereby receiving it for no money at all? Do you still object?

“I see you use pot as your example (rather than harder drugs). Why is that?”

Because, quite frankly, it’s cheap and widely available. Substitute your favortive ballgame-watching drug in the example if you want.

“In any case, you are talking with someone who smoked pot for 5 years as a teenager and knows how its regular use can effect people.”

That might give you some insight into the drug side of the discussion, but it doesn’t give you any insight into the public assistance side.

“What, exactly, is the foundation of the moral obloquy you seem to want to pile on the guy?”

“Drugs do not generally help people. Exercise, a good diet, social support, a strong work ethic and integrity usually do.”

So what does that mean in functional terms? If a poor person does not act in accord with your personal beliefs along those dimensions, that he’s somehow morally unworthy of receiving public assistance?

“If he is not on welfare, I care but not as much. It violates my conscience to give money to street people who use it simply to by alcohol. That is why I don;t give them money, but instead buy them food if they want it.”

So your problem with this particular issue is that they’re receiving TANF, which is generally paid out in cash? How about if they received SNAP benefits instead? That’s food-only, in debit card form. Would that make you more comfortable?

“Likewise it bothers me to be forced at the point of a gun to give money to people who are going to spend it on drugs. Make sense?”

Not really. Who’s holding a gun on you?

stands for decibels - I got your "triangulation" right here

February 26th, 2013
3:20 pm

…oh, wait, Redcoat, I get it. Our side is supposed to unilaterally disarm and allow your side to create whatever kind of political funding mechanisms you can build under the law.

My apologies for this grievous error @ 3.17.

stands for decibels - I got your "triangulation" right here

February 26th, 2013
3:21 pm

the smart ass award

I’d like to thank the Academy.
You like me. You really like me!

Joe Hussein Mama

February 26th, 2013
3:22 pm

Redcoat — “Joe Mama……do you think there is a problem or not? evidence?….”

*You* asserted that there *was* a problem, so I asked you for your evidence.

Please, by all means, proceed.

willydoit?

February 26th, 2013
3:22 pm

“It’s odd how suddenly, on this issue, conservatives recognize no constitutional limit on what government can do.”

I’ll give you NO drug testing for welfare folks if you give me NO gun control….after all, there is no constitutional limit on that either!

Redcoat

February 26th, 2013
3:23 pm

stands for decibels ………….but what did he promise to do?

DownInAlbany

February 26th, 2013
3:23 pm

Joe Hussein Mama

February 26th, 2013
2:48 pm

You moved the goalposts, there, Joe. We’re talking about welfare recipients, remember? But, IF there were a way to do that, I would take you up.

JohnnyReb

February 26th, 2013
3:23 pm

Finn – you have conservatives mixed up with the latest round of WalMart shopper photos.

Jay

February 26th, 2013
3:23 pm

“All it would take is enough backing to believe it the right thing to do. Obviously, that amount of backing is not there.”

No, all it would take is evidence and a logical argument.

As the court stated today, there is both evidence and logical argument to justify the need for searches — drug tests — in the transportation industries, because the consequences of drugged behavior is so high, and because it had been demonstrated that there is a problem.

There is no evidence, and no logical argument, for doing so with welfare recipients.

Granny Godzilla

February 26th, 2013
3:23 pm

stands

they don’t like the taste of their own medicine….surprise!

Brosephus™ - Desktop but still Multitasking

February 26th, 2013
3:24 pm

godless @ 12:47

They owed him at least a paint job, IMHO. To just do that and leave him like that is wrong, even if you had cause to perform the search. Things like that give all law enforcement a bad rep.

————–

Scout @ 1:21
so I would have no problem with just an “arrest” being the line drawn for losing one’s welfare payments.

I’ll respectfully have to disagree with you simply because an arrest is not necessarily equal to guilt. Once guilt is proven by court of law, then I’m aboard with you.

————–

Madmax @ 1:21
So we submit to these tests because we need the jobs. I agree so what is the objection to having somebody who is applying for aid (they need it right?) submitting to these tests?

Nope. It’s still an illegal search without your consent to be searched. There is no law requiring you to ok the drug test prior to employment. Companies simply have not been taken to court over the legality of such a search. People usually give in to the request without knowing their rights. As long as employers have the upper hand, nobody’s going to press this issue in a court of law.

The government, on the other hand, is held to a higher standard when it comes to 4th Amendment searches. As it stands, you would need a warrant to compel a test or have probable cause. Neither one of those exists in relation to the Florida law.

—————

Heyward @ 1:44
I can hear Brocephus now (or any prog for that matter).
“when on any public road or place, one has no reasonable expectation of privacy.
In a few states…the Authorities can seize your blood.

When you have to lie to make your point, you don’t have a point to make. Still sore from earlier, huh? One last thing, always double check your name after doing your sockety-puppety, Shari Lewis thingie, K?

stands for decibels - I got your "triangulation" right here

February 26th, 2013
3:24 pm

but what did he promise to do?

Mostly? Fight like hell and win. And he did.

You can go on complaining about “he PROMISED to let us watch the PPACA Committee chair bathroom breaks live on TV, wahh, where is my TRANSPARENCY THAT I DID NOT VOTE FOR” if you like, but I’ll go on mocking it.

Get Real

February 26th, 2013
3:25 pm

Again Jay, I am not requesting free money…that is the difference in my mind so we have to agree to disagree.

Sparta_Bubba

February 26th, 2013
3:26 pm

In case you are curious the three judges rendering this decision were Hall>>BUSH; Barkett>>Clinton & Jordan>>Obama.

Redcoat

February 26th, 2013
3:26 pm

Why should anyone have to apply for welfare, fill out all that embarrassing paperwork with all you personal information…..who’s idea was that? Who’s business is it anyway? Very degrading if you ask me……

liberal hack

February 26th, 2013
3:26 pm

oh Granny, you mean that, economic slavery. yes I do! when you have to give over 70% of earned income to the state, local, and federal gov’t, I’d say that is a form of economic slavery.

I also would call it economic slavery if you just earn a little of what the US considers poverty and you are not eligible to get any supplement from the federal gov’t. What I’m saying is that it’s easier to get a gov’t ebt card, a welfare card, and medicaid and subsidized housing than it is get out of that cycle of having to stay in that cycle of dependency. If the gov’t doesn’t allow you to exceed the income level to put you in a better place then you are an economic slave to the gov’t.

The system in place to “help” the poor is only a system designed to keep the poor in their current economic status, except to make it “easier for them” at that level. once they exceed earned income thresholds, they are dropped placing them no better than they were when they were getting max help from the gov’t. aka gov’t economic slaves!

josef

February 26th, 2013
3:27 pm

IMAM TORQUEMADA
Fred’s been sent to the lower 40 of the liberal plantation AGAIN? What for this time? Dang, but he do seem to keep you in a twirlin’ dither, he do… :-)

THE REST OF Y’ALL

Do we need to call out the Free Fred brigade?

Tom( Viet Vet-USAF)

February 26th, 2013
3:28 pm

Just a thought here, since you libs believe in providing all those freebies to pretty much all that request them, and us conservatives do not. Why don’t you guys provide more taxpayer money to the govt than us cons. Of course you do it voluntarily, just think of it a new classification on our yearly federal tax form, Liberals or Conservatives. Wake up Tom, you are dreaming again.

Redcoat

February 26th, 2013
3:29 pm

stands for decibels…..so who do you trust? the one that only makes the best promises, not keep them?

That Black Guy

February 26th, 2013
3:30 pm

Aquagirl

February 26th, 2013
1:47 pm
Did you ever think our country would sink this low?

Oh, save your fake outrage Senior Digits. The guy who filed this suit is a Navy Vet attending college while raising his kid and taking care of his disabled mom. You want him peeing in a cup and picking up trash just so he knows his place.

Good thing LIBERALS are standing up for this man’s rights while you try to trample them.

Go to his house and demand a urine sample, I hope he complies and waters your shoes. You’d never do that though as long as you can hide behind the govenment’s skirts, they’ll do the bullying for you.
_________________________________________
You do know that Digits was talking about the school that sent the kid home for wearing a US Marines shirt, right?

Right?

Joe Hussein Mama

February 26th, 2013
3:30 pm

DIA — “You moved the goalposts, there, Joe. We’re talking about welfare recipients, remember?”

Fail. Theosophist and I were talking about the ‘poor people buying steak with foodstamps meme’ that flies around in here from time to time. *He* made the pivot back, not me.

You simply weren’t following our discussion.

alex

February 26th, 2013
3:30 pm

“deeply cherished stereotypes” : Jay, you are all about stereotypes, it’s what you and most of your syncophants do, it’s the only way you can think….just the way it is…It is difficult, in the words of Nisbett and Borgida,”Subjects’ unwillingness to deduce the particular form the general was matched only by their willingness to infer the general from the particular.”

Brosephus™ - Desktop but still Multitasking

February 26th, 2013
3:31 pm

dB @ 2:21

Drug test the politicians.

I hear that a lot, but seriously, don’t the health insurance plans that Congrefsfolk (as opposed to cheezy penny-ante state legislators, who probably are on their own for the most part) likely require such a thing, already?

Nope. They supposedly have the same insurance plans as we do, and they don’t require testing.

A dad

February 26th, 2013
3:32 pm

Jay@3:13. You have no problem with the “private commercial transaction”between Get Real and his employer, but where, pray tell, in out Constitution is the right to receive TANF? I’m afraid you are overextending the protections granted under the 4th Amendment to what is essentially nothing more than another private transaction. The 4th secures our rights to be secure from unreasonable search and seizure, however out in WA and OR, the state gov’ts there are considering allowing police (i.e., agents of the state) to enter a private home to “inspect” that homes weapons. Talk about a violation of the 4th. But I stray. If you talk with anyone who works in retail, I’m sure they can tell stories about TANF recipients routinely showing up with iPhones, wearing the latest fashions (remember those $3-400 sneakers) and such, and just this morning the ajc ran a story about some merchant trading cash for these exact kind of benefits. The potential for abuse, and actual abuse, in this exact situation is there. Anyone who denies this is either blind or so biased that they wouldn’t admit it if a house fell on them. In reading the 11th Circuit’s opinion, and you pretty much hit it yourself, the problem here was FL did a poor job of producing evidence to support its claims. As with any other litigation, civil or criminal, lack of evidence/failure to produce is generally fatal to that side. I predict this issue will pop up again, and if properly supported, would pass constitutional muster. After all, although the gov’t provide TANF benies, such programs are neither a constitutional right nor a constitutional guarantee. Or maybe or SCOTUS will declare them a tax and dodge the issue (sorry, couldn’t resist). Comment on Bookie bloggers!

JohnnyReb

February 26th, 2013
3:33 pm

I have no problem with wealth redistribution to needy children, old people, and those with a legitimate disability.

Past those, I want to see people working.

I don’t care if they are paid $2 an hour digging ditches and then covering them up. No workie, no money. They can keep the $2 plus get the government check.

That Black Guy

February 26th, 2013
3:33 pm

Look before I leap…

February 26th, 2013
1:53 pm
” If you abuse drugs, you are likely abusing the system of welfare”

I think Rush Limbaugh might take issue with that statement.
_____________________________________
Obama to…

Jay

February 26th, 2013
3:34 pm

So alex, let me get this straight: You’re stereotyping about liberals’ use of stereotypes?

DownInAlbany

February 26th, 2013
3:34 pm

Jay

February 26th, 2013
3:13 pm

Again, Jay, how do you and your following reconcile that with the fact that the feds are now requiring me to purchase h/c insurance?

TaxPayer

February 26th, 2013
3:34 pm

Tom,

Why don’t you guys pay for your perpetual war mongering.

hewhoasks

February 26th, 2013
3:36 pm

Such laws also keep the noise machine going – which I’d probably see if I scanned the above comments.

Jay

February 26th, 2013
3:36 pm

Set your boa down on the ground and step back, Josef. In this case, Fred himself agreed he had crossed the line.

I mean, who thought Fred even HAD a line?

Welcome to the Occupation

February 26th, 2013
3:36 pm

Jay: “Again, Get Real, what you and your employer agree upon in a private commercial transaction between the two of you is between the two of you.

But when government requires such a warrantless search of its citizens, it is a clear, blatant violation of the Fourth Amendment. It’s odd how suddenly, on this issue, conservatives recognize no constitutional limit on what government can do.”

Liberal claptrap!

It’s an outrage that ANYONE has to take a drug test when there is not some legitimate material purpose for doing so and when there is no co-oversight exercised by the workers subject to it. Why draw a line at just the government being able to do it? Why do you allow for the right of private employers to intimidate and meddle in the privacy of their workers and potential workers?

Peadawg

February 26th, 2013
3:36 pm

Funny how Jay keeps ignoring the HOPE Scholarship issue….

stands for decibels - I got your "triangulation" right here

February 26th, 2013
3:36 pm

stands for decibels…..so who do you trust?

My family and close friends. With elected officials, I see what they manage to accomplish and rate them accordingly. Obama’s been an OK president on balance, compared to the previous 43, but I don’t have unrealistic expectations of what his Administration will manage to accomplish in the next four years.

tbs

February 26th, 2013
3:37 pm

josef

You got mail

Corbin Sharpe. I think, therefore I am...I think.

February 26th, 2013
3:37 pm

I can solve this drug/welfare issue in an instant. Make it mandatory to take drugs to be able to get welfare!

Then…legalize drugs and pass a law requiring piss tests to make sure you are taking your fair share….keeping the economy up and all that, don’t you know…

RB from Gwinnett

February 26th, 2013
3:38 pm

“ANOTHER guy who believes the fake Hitler gun-control quotes that rattle around in the wingnuttisphere, one presumes”

Yea, cause all 6 million of those Jews went quitely with the man at the door instead of shooting them in the face because the nice man told them they were taking them to Disneyland, right? I’m guessing it was the Mickey Mouse postcards from all the neighbors who were taken before them that kept them in the dark about what was happening to them, don’t you think?

DownInAlbany

February 26th, 2013
3:38 pm

Joe Hussein Mama

February 26th, 2013
3:30 pm

I’ll agree with one thing. I don’t have the time nor the inclination to follow you, but, you directed the challenge to me…just saying…

Corbin Sharpe. I think, therefore I am...I think.

February 26th, 2013
3:39 pm

Free Fred brigade? Nah, someone might think you were saying Free Bread…and ALL the pigeons might show up…

josef

February 26th, 2013
3:40 pm

alex

Oh, Big Daddy’s not real bad about stereotyping, but his sycophants, by which I suppose you mean the liberal lefties aboard? Whoo, whee…they got enough of their own dirty laundry there to outfit a klavern of the klan…