During Supreme Court interview, Larry Metz discloses he has Parkinson's – Florida Politics (blog)
The third round of interviews of Florida Supreme Court applicants on Monday brought several revelations, including state Rep. Larry Metz’s disclosure that he has Parkinson’s disease.
Metz, a Yalaha Republican, shared his diagnosis with members of the Supreme Court Judicial Nominating Commission at the end of his interview.
“I don’t think it’s an issue,” Metz told the panel, adding he is not on medication for the condition. “But I did not want to not mention it.”
Parkinson’s is a “chronic and progressive movement disorder, meaning that symptoms continue and worsen over time,” according to the Parkinson’s Disease Foundation.
It’s caused when certain nerve cells in the brain die. There is no cure, although the symptoms can be managed through medication.
The disease, which has an unknown cause, often manifests through trembling of the hands, legs and jaw.
The late U.S. Attorney General Janet Reno had the illness, as does actor Michael J. Fox. Nearly 1 million people in the U.S. have Parkinson’s disease, according to the foundation.
The third round included Metz, Chief Judge C. Alan Lawson of the 5th District Court of Appeal and Circuit Judge Michelle T. Morley of Sumter County.
The man Lawson seeks to replace, retiring Justice James E.C. Perry, is the same person who beat him in 2009 for the high court job, itself created by the retirement of Justice Charles T. Wells.
In his interview, Lawson spoke of the need to foster communication between the branches of government. Lawmakers have slammed the high court in recent years for opinions they say veered too much into policymaking.
Lawson used the example of his inviting then-House Speaker Dean Cannon to sit in on a violation of probation hearing. Otherwise, he said. the only interaction judges and legislators have is when they’re asking for money during budget meetings,