WASHINGTON – The U.S. House of Representatives on Wednesday voted to rename the federal court building in Tallahassee in honor of the first judge of the Florida Supreme Court of African Americans.

According to a press release from Florida Representative El Lawson of District 5, the House of Representatives passed a bill (S.2938 / HR4771) honoring Florida Supreme Court Justice Joseph Hatchet by 230 votes.

Voting follows initial vote renamed the courthouse on March 30 in the Chamber failed.

The bill, initiated by Lawson, would rename the North Florida Courthouse in Tallahassee to “Judge Joseph Woodrow Hatchet,” recognizing the first black judge of the Florida Supreme Court.

The courthouse is located at 111 North Adams Street in Tallahassee.

The passage of the bill in the House of Representatives on Wednesday was part of House Resolution 1119.

Lawson of Tallahassee noted that the Florida delegation to the House of Representatives was one of the authors of this measure, and the bill is aimed at adoption in the United States Senate.

“Judge Hatchet was a leading American judge and veteran,” Lawson said in a statement. “He was a supporter of social justice reform and a dedicated civil servant. Although he experienced racial discrimination, this never hindered his desire to serve in the justice system. He had a long career as a prestigious judge, military service and civil rights advocacy, which broke down barriers for the black community. “

Hatchet died in April 2021.

“I voted to rename the federal court in Tallahassee in honor of Judge Joseph Woodt Hatchett and his many accomplishments,” said Florida State Department spokesman Neil Dunn, a Florida Republican spokesman. was hasty and deserves more study. Having reviewed the information for this appointment, I would like to have an honest discussion and note the many achievements of Judge Hatchet. He is a great Florida and American, and he should be recognized as such. I object to his decision regarding student-approved graduation prayers; however, this one solution should not overshadow all his achievements. Now that I have had time to learn more about Judge Hatchet, I am proud to support the renaming of this courthouse. ”

Relevant counties of Dan and Lawson include parts of Tallahassee and Leon counties.

The renaming of the courthouse was halted in late March after the Republican Congressman from Georgia shared a ruling issued by Hatchett in 1999 as a judge of the Court of Appeal against prayer in the graduating district of a public school in Duval County.

Democrat Lawson noticed splitting the decision before the vote in March did not allow the bill to garner 2/3 of the votes in favor.

“I was very disappointed with my Republican colleagues who voted against this measure when it was originally passed because they were misled about the 1990 hatchet resolution on prayer at graduation school,” said a spokesman for Lawson. “Judge Hatchet simply followed the precedent of the U.S. Supreme Court.”

Hatchet served as a judge of the Florida Supreme Court in 1975-79, during his career he was appointed to the U.S. Court of Appeals for the Fifth and Eleventh Districts.

Accounts 117hres1119eh on WTXL ABC27 of Scribd

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