Florida Supreme Court tosses petition to block appointments

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TALLAHASSEE, Fla. (AP) -- The Florida Supreme Court is tossing out a petition aiming to stop Republican Gov. Rick Scott from appointing three state Supreme Court justices on the day he leaves office.

The court announced its decision Thursday, saying that it can't rule on something that hasn't happened.

The Florida branch of the League of Women Voters and the government watchdog group Common Cause filed a petition with the Supreme Court in June saying Scott's successor should make the appointments.

Age limits are forcing three justices to retire on the day Scott leaves office in January 2019 because of term limits. Scott has said he plans to name their replacements that same morning.

Scott's decision could change the balance of the court for decades. If Scott gets his way, the seven-member court would be stacked with six conservative judges.