gavel_2.jpgTALLAHASSEE, Fla. (AP) _ The Florida Supreme Court's new leadership rules are reaping a firestorm of opposition from judges and lawyers.


Conferences of trial and appellate judges have filed motions urging the justices to reconsider rules they say infringe on their free speech rights and set arbitrary and unnecessary eight-year term limits for chief judges.

Some also have objected to the Supreme Court's approval of the rules without first seeking comment from judges, lawyers and the public.

As of Wednesday, the justices had not responded. Three of the seven justices, though, had dissented from all or parts of the new rules when they were approved in February.

The judges noted Florida has only one black and one Hispanic chief circuit judge and the new term limits would prohibit both from seeking another term.