Yesterday, Representative Bob Cortes again requested that Governor Scott remove State Attorney Aramis Ayala from office. The request follows the Florida Supreme Court decision yesterday affirming Governor Scott’s legal right to reassign cases in the Ninth Judicial Circuit due to Ayala’s decision to not pursue the death penalty in many cases she prosecutes. The text of Cortes’s letter to Governor Scott is below:

August 31, 2017 

Dear Governor Scott:

Today’s Supreme Court ruling regarding your decision to remove State Attorney Aramis Ayala from pending death penalty cases was a victory for you, the people of Florida, and the cause of justice. I congratulate you on this victory and want to express my continued appreciation for your strong stand for justice and families who have been the victims of unspeakable crimes.

As you know, I have previously requested that you take the further step of removing State Attorney Ayala from office. She has made it clear she does not intend to consider the full range of punishment for perpetrators of the most despicable crimes, and I continue to be concerned about her ability to handle future cases in accordance with our constitution. I believe her decision to take the death penalty off the table in the cases she prosecutes is a dereliction of duty.

Now that the Supreme Court has affirmed that you are well within your legal rights as Governor to reassign her cases, I respectfully request again that you suspend State Attorney Ayala from her position on the Ninth Judicial Circuit on the basis of Article IV Section 7 of the Florida Constitution. The citizens of the Ninth Circuit deserve to have a State Attorney who will seek justice and not abuse prosecutorial discretion.

I await your response and diligence on this most important matter.


Bob Cortes
State Representative, District 30