A Hillsborough County judge who denied a Florida teen an abortion because of her low grades, lost his reelection bid.
Jared Smith, who was appointed to Florida’s 13th Circuit Court by Gov. Ron DeSantis (R) in 2019 was beaten in a nonpartisan primary on Tuesday by attorney Nancy Jacobs, according to the Hill.
Jacobs beat Smith by 3.7 percentage points, approximately 7,900 votes.
Smith received widespread condemnation for a January ruling in which he denied a pregnant 17-year-old an abortion because of her low grades.
“The court found her intelligence to be less than average … she claimed that her grades were ‘Bs’ during her testimony, her GPA is currently 2.0,” Smith wrote at the time. “Clearly, a ‘B’ average would not equate to a 2.0 GPA.”
An appeals court later overturned Smith’s decision.
Florida law allows minors to seek a “judicial bypass” and get a court’s permission for an abortion if they cannot get consent from a parent or guardian. The court can waive parental consent if it finds that the minor is “sufficiently mature” to decide to have an abortion.
In another case earlier this month, the appeals court affirmed a lower court decision to block a 16-year-old from getting an abortion because she was not mature enough.
The unnamed girl, who is described as “parentless”, is pursuing a GED through a programme for survivors of trauma said she is “not ready to have a baby,” she doesn’t have a job, she is “still in school.” The girl also wrote in her petition that the father is unable to assist her and her legal guardian is “fine with what she wants to do.”
Smith was one of two officials who were ousted in Tuesday’s primaries after being criticized for their views on abortion. State Rep James Bush, the only Democratic lawmaker in the state legislature who supported a law to ban abortion also lost his re-election bid.
The losses are a positive sign for Democrats who hoped that the US Supreme Court overturning Roe v. Wade would motivate voters in this year’s midterm election.