Constitution of 1885

Delegates convened in June 1885 to revise Florida’s state constitution. The existing constitution had been in effect since 1868, when it was adopted as part of Florida’s reentry into the United States following the Civil War. The 1885 constitution legitimized poll taxes as a prerequisite for voting, which ultimately disproportionately disenfranchised African Americans and many poor whites.

Constitution of 1885


same shall receive two-thirds of the votes present it shall become a law.

Section 29. The House of Representatives shall have the sole power of impeachment; but a vote of two-thirds of all members present shall be required to impeach any officer; and all impeachments shall be tried by the Senate. When sitting for that purpose the Senators shall be upon oath or affirmation, and no person shall be convicted without the concurrence of two-thirds of the Senators present. The Senate may adjourn to a fixed day for the trial of any impeachment, and may sit for the purpose of such trial whether the House of Representatives be in session or not, but the time fixed for such trial shall not be more than six months from the time articles of impeachment shall be preferred by the House of Representatives. The Chief Justice shall preside at all trials by impeachment except in the trial of the Chief Justice, when the Governor shall preside. The Governor, Administrative officers of the Executive Department, Justices of the Supreme Court, and Judges of the Circuit Court shall be liable to impeachment for any misdemeanor in office, but judgment in such cases shall extend only to removal from office and disqualification to hold any office of honor, trust or profit under the State; but the party convicted or acquitted shall nevertheless be liable to indictment, trial and punishment according to law.

Section 30. Laws making appropriations for the salaries of public officers and other current expenses of the State shall contain provisions on no other subject.

Section 31. The Legislature shall elect United States Senators in the manner prescribed by the Congress of the United States and by this Constitution.

Section 32. The repeal or amendment of any Criminal Statute shall not affect the prosecution or punishment of any crime committed before such repeal or amendment.

Section 33. No statute shall be passed lessening the time within which